Month: July 2018

Overcoming Common Obstacles To Become An Author

Nicholas C. Rossis

This is another freelance contribution by Sally Keys. You may remember her from her recent freelance contribution, How Creative Writing Can Boost Your Intelligence. Sally is a professional freelance writer with many years of experience in diverse areas. She made the move to freelancing from a stressful corporate job and loves the work-life balance it offers her. When not at work, she enjoys reading, hiking, spending time with her family, and traveling as much as possible. 

Common Obstacles To Becoming An Author And How To Overcome Them

Overcoming writing obstacles | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's book Photo by Christin Hume on Unsplash

Fully 80 percent of Americans say they have the ambition to write a book, yet only a fraction of those will go ahead and even fewer will actually succeed. Writing for a living can be a dream job for those with a true passion for a perfectly arranged sentence, but the reality of being an…

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Focusing Your Novel With a Journalist’s Trick

A Writer's Path

by Andrea Lundgren

Okay, perhaps it’s more of a tool than a trick, but journalists have been using the “Who-What-Where-When-Why-and-How” format on hard news pieces for well over a century (to judge by the sort of articles they write, where each of these items are addressed), and I’ve found the six questions are equally useful when writing a novel.

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Dog Days of Summer and The Week in Review

Joan Hall

A sunflower stands tall during the Dog Days of Summer, 2011. Texas experienced a severe drought that year.

It’s hot here in Texas. Triple digit hot. We were blessed to be able to enjoy a few days of afternoon rain showers earlier in the month, but they have parted. And with the heat, the Sarahan dust has returned. It’s the dog days of summer.

I’ve heard about the dog days since I was a child, but I never knew how the term came about until recently. Historically, the dog days began with the rising of the star, Sirius. Greek and Roman Mythology associated the star with heat, drought, sudden thunderstorms, lethargy, fever, bad luck, and mad dogs. By the way, Sirius is known as the Dog Star. In modern times, dog days are the hotest and most unconfortable part of summer in the northern hemisphere.

And now that you’ve had…

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Summer Reads, Summer Deals

Nicholas C. Rossis

Celebrate With Gifts

To celebrate the imminent release of my next book, A Heaven For Toasters, my entire Pearseus series will be FREE/99c between the 16th and 20th! This is the perfect opportunity to buy any of the books in the series you may have missed.

Check out Pearseus on Amazon.

Pearseus free days | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

An Amazing Giveaway

Next, Paula Wynne is running a book giveaway with Book Luver with over 300 books to give away. Some are paperbacks and others are eBooks. There are bestsellers to win too: one of them has sold over 1 million copies already! There are 100s of books to win so please invite your friends and family to enter. By entering you will not be automatically subscribed to the author or publisher’s email. You select which books you want to win. Only if you want to hear from that author again, you tick a…

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Women in charge – Movie list


“Moreover, all this ruin was brought upon the Romans by a woman, a fact which in itself caused them the greatest shame… The person who was chiefly instrumental in rousing the natives and persuading them to fight the Romans, the person who was thought worthy to be their leader and who directed the conduct of the entire war, was Boudica, a Briton woman of the royal family and possessed of greater intelligence than often belongs to women..”
Historical info at Masterpiece theatre
Movie info at: WikipediaTrailer at: Youtube
A tribe of Amazons needs a new leader. The IMDB article is at: Le Guerriere Dal Seno Nudo. Also known as War Goddesses.

Trailer at: Youtube


Two sisters battling for the land of OZ. The Wikipedia article is at: Tin ManTrailer at: Youtube

This historical drama is a loose version of the true story of Catherine the Great of Russia.Intro video at: Youtube
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Another Joan of Arc biopic.Fan Trailer at: Youtube

Apparently people don’t like the White Witch’s leadership.

Smilla: “I’m sorry I’ve given you the impression it’s my mouth that’s rough. I try to be rough all over.”

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People who added this item 68 Average listal rating (47 ratings) 6 IMDB Rating 5.8
She (1965)

This documentary is about women in Liberia working to end a civil war.


When the space ship crashes, the pilot played by Radha Mitchell is in charge. Although passengers keep ignoring her, wondering off and getting killed.Trailer at: Youtube
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People who added this item 366 Average listal rating (187 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8
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People who added this item 141 Average listal rating (75 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.4
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People who added this item 3591 Average listal rating (2306 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.6
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People who added this item 260 Average listal rating (159 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 6.7

Looks are deceiving. “Don’t f**k with me fellas. This ain’t my first time at the rodeo.”
Movie info at: Wikipedia
 
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The women strike for fairness. The Wikipedia article is at: Made in Dagenham.
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Article about historical person Wikipedia

Queen Sibylla scenes Youtube

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People who added this item 50 Average listal rating (29 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 6.5
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This movie, based on a true story, tells about the struggle in the U.S. for women’s voting rights in the early 1900s. The Wikipedia article is at: Iron Jawed Angels
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The Wikipedia article is at: Gorillas in the Mist
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People who added this item 2545 Average listal rating (1597 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 7.3
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She is in charge. But the Spanish armada is coming to kick her out. History tells us who won that contest.
Historical facts at: WikipediaMusic at: Youtube
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She is technically second in command. But you see who wears the pants in this situation.
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Army Captain Karen Emma Walden is dead after leading a helicopter rescue of a surrounded US combat team. In a Rashomon type revel of what happened, we determine whether she died a hero.Trailer at: Youtube
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People who added this item 21 Average listal rating (16 ratings) 6.3 IMDB Rating 7.1
Chaos (2001)
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People who added this item 15 Average listal rating (11 ratings) 4.7 IMDB Rating 3.7

It is a world run by cat-women. They are a race of women without men.
 

The Wikipedia article is at: Beyond RangoonTrailer at Youtube
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She is officially the guide. Of course, they don’t listen to her and all die.
Trailer at: Youtube
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Ripley takes charge when marines are attacked. The alien queen is big and bad.Trailer at: Youtube

Aelita is the queen of Mars. But probably she won’t be after the socialist revolution on Mars.
Movie info at: Wikipedia

New Release: Quest of the Brokenhearted By Charles E. Yallowitz

Nicholas C. Rossis

I often say that my author friend, Charles E. Yallowitz, is one of the most prolific writers I know. The proof, I guess, lies in how often I host his new releases! Charles has now published his latest release, Quest of the Brokenhearted; a spinoff series taking place in his celebrated Legends of Windemere universe. 

A battered soul faces a city of monsters in
Quest of the Brokenhearted!

Cover Art by Sean Harrington

As Windemere moves forward, a broken spirit falls into the shadows.

Two years have passed since Luke Callindor was lost during the champions’ battle against Baron Kernaghan. Many mourn the loss, but none have been hurt more than the fiancée he left behind, Kira Grasdon. Plagued by grief and determined to prove he is alive, she has sacrificed her business, her reputation, and her hope. Surviving on the streets of Gaia, she has become an…

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Satire of #secondscivilwarletters

African American troops in the first Civil War

July 4th this year saw a scrimmage on the internets hereabouts. Often flame wars have broken out between young fellers over keyboarding disagreements about sports, culture or politics. This week, however, saw an outright war take place on social media called the Second Civil War. This imaginary conflict sparked humorous exchanges pretending to pen letters home from the front lines of battles betwixt supporters and opponents of President Trump.

After Alex Jones warned of a so-called plan by the Democratic Party to commence real war on Independence day, the metaphorical struggle was begun by Amanda Blount‏@amandablount2 on July 2nd with a tweet:

My Dear John, The war isn’t going as planned. Our supply trucks are limited. I’m out of wine and sunscreen. The enemy burned all the books and there is no place to recharge my Kindle. The only music is an old CD of Justin Bieber. — All is lost. #secondcivilwarletters

A Twitter battle royal ensued. Much hyperbolic blood was spilt in the ongoing scouting expeditions into Starbucks and Walmarts across the country. I personally experienced many laugh-out-loud moments, reading these tweets. Most were political attacks against opponents. Democratic-leaning tweeters joked about Trump or his family members, cabinet members, or supports who were often called Redhats or Redcaps. Trump supporters launched barbs into Libtards and soft Birkenstock yoga practitioners on the left.

To my surprise, I found the tweets that most entertained me to be the ones that were gentle, usually did not mention opposition characters by name, and contained a solid bit of self-deprecation. Surprised because I am a strong partisan for one side. But, I have for two years felt that personal verbal attacks should be directed at Trump. I feel justified by surveys that show Trump supporters are strengthened in their resolve and loyalty in response to attacks against the president.

A keynote of many entries was acknowledgment of internal weaknesses of our sides that do not make us suitable for this battle. Leftists often mention their non-use of guns, bullets and a dependence on books and knowledge as weapons. Many tweets mentioned the dependence on available charge connections for Kindles and iPhones. Here was a tweet I sent:

Beloved, supplies low on this 3rd day of #SecondCivilWarLetters. Only stale, cold avocado toast remains. Kindle and Android down to single bars. Send solar chargers, stat. Awaiting Canadian care packages of Poutine. Must have more thoughts and prayers!

I’ve enjoyed the postings that address stereotypes. So I think it’s good that many tweets attacked perceived stereotypical beliefs of the opposition. For example:

Ruth Golmant@Rgolmant on July 4th:
My dearest Fanny,
We survived an ambush by red hats today by changing road signs from directions to Rand Paul’s home to RuPaul’s home. Many were confused and simply returned to their camp. Love, Ben
#SecondCivilWarLetter

Postings tried to convey how our side was confident of victory, while revealing weaknesses that threaten our ability to really compete. See:

Harrison Breault‏@HarrisonBreault on July 5th:
Dearest Mother, It is late in day 2 of the 2nd Civil War. I managed to gain entry to their HQ w/my Confederate Flag. When they asked for the password I uttered “Dont tread on me.” I was in. But they began the pledge of allegiance and I knelt. They knew. #secondcivilwarletters

While Alex Jones began an unexpected battle between left and right, the humor and sarcasm revealed points of agreement across the divide and perhaps may be positive in the long run. Alex Jones was correct, in a self-fulfilling way, in that this is a second civil war for the electronic era. And many a belly-laugh has been had, especially over the sarcastic, self-referential stereotypical exaggerations, I truly hope the worst damage would result in slightly bruised feelings (on either side). My best wishes are that those little grains of truth to be found in humor could result in some honest reflection and try to heal the huge rift in our beautiful land.

To read more stories, visit me on Medium, and follow along on this journey of political observation.

StumbleUpon is Shutting Down

Nicholas C. Rossis

StumbleUpon | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's bookI usually get some 300-400 views on my posts. There were some exceptions, though. A couple of times, I had a few thousand views out of nowhere. Or, at least, that’s what it looked like. After a brief examination, I realized the extra visitors had come courtesy of StumbleUpon.

Which is why I was sad to hear that, after 16 years, StumbleUpon shut down on June 30, 2018.

Before posts and tweets, before snaps and pins, StumbleUpon was providing endless internet entertainment with just the push of a button. In its 16 years, it served up nearly 60 billion stumbles to over 40 million Stumblers, and infinite hours of “woah, cool” moments.

Welcome Mix

However, there is a silver lining. The people behind StumbleUpon, have started up Mix! On Mix, people can build shareable collections of their favorite finds across the internet: articles, videos, podcasts, and more. As you curate…

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The Liebster Award

My Writer's Journey

LiebsterAward2

It has been more than two years since I was nominated for the Liebster Award. This time I thank Author Gibson for the nomination, check out his blog and his books here.

Once I have answered the questions, I will nominate 11 new bloggers and ask them 11 questions myself. Should they feel like playing along, they will do the same to other 11 bloggers. The hope is to spread the word and dominate the ‘internet’ world 😉 (super villain laugh included).

Nominee’s Rules:

Thank me, as I nominated you, so you (kind of) own me! and supply a link to my blog for your readers to browse: https://leticiatoraci.wordpress.com/
Copy and paste the Liebster Award badge into your post.
Answer the eleven questions.
Nominate eleven bloggers and inform them of their nomination via social media methods.
List eleven new questions for your nominees to answer.

Once again, there…

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The Essential Facebook Metrics for Authors

Nicholas C. Rossis

This is a guest post by Ilan Nass.

The Essential Facebook Metrics for Authors

Facebook book marketing | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books Photo by http://offers.hubspot.com/science-of-facebook-marketing

Facebook Ads are useful to marketers because they offer the chance to track a wide range of metrics. However, determining how effective a campaign actually is requires understanding which metrics are worth tracking, and which you can ignore.

Authors who are just beginning to use Facebook Ads often don’t realize that the statistics and data Facebook highlights often don’t fully illustrate a campaign’s return on investment |(ROI). That’s why, when you’re just starting out, it can be helpful to partner with an experienced Facebook marketing agency. Doing so will help you develop a thorough understanding of how to succeed with Facebook ads.

But, if you’d like to get an idea of the process behind selecting and tracking important campaign metrics, keep reading.

Metrics to exclude

First of all, it’s a good idea…

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