Poetry Challenge: Rictameter

Greetings, All–

Sometimes I write poems in response to prompts posted on the Miss Rumphius Effect blog.  This one calls for a 9-line poem with the following syllable counts:  2-4-6-8-10-8-6-4-2, and requires the first and last lines to match.

You

You are…
the crest upon
a robin’s chest, the blue
in a bluebird’s feathery nest.
You’re the song I sing when I go to sleep,
the words I pray my soul to keep
when I need to be strong—
and if I’m not…
you are.

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A Poem for Fall . . . and two free books

Dear Readers,

Happy Fall!  To celebrate, I’m giving away digital versions of two of my children’s books this weekend (Oct. 24 & 25) . . .

Yogabets: An Acrobatic Alphabet

Cover 1200 dpi YOGA single pp for CS - 9 22 15_Page_01
https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=yogabets
&

One Charming Cat (Un Chat Charmant).

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B016B0F6PG?keywords=one%20charming%20cat&qid=1445615776&ref_=sr_1_1&sr=8-1

I’d love to know what you think of them!

For Richer or Poorer

A spare red ring
can mean
many things—
from a bedbug bite
to a life-saving buoy,
from the hatband
mark on an old
man’s head
to the salty rose
of a child’s
mouth,
from the
first full chomp
of a ripe red
fruit
to the mulberry
groove on
a widow’s hand—
yes, a deep
red ring can
mean many
things.

Summertime, Part II

IMG_1387
from Blueberry Moon

Dear Readers,

I’ve written dozens of poems over the years—but they’re all mixed up! So, starting today, I’ve vowed to organize them.

But how? Long to short? Winter to summer? Happy to sad?

Well, it’s summer (and this is short), so . . .

SUMMERTIME

Rain and thunder
snow and ice
I think summer’s
twice as nice.

Update on Self-Publishing, Part 3

Hello family, friends and poetry lovers! Sorry I’ve been away so long. I’ve been editing/correcting/illustrating/polishing my picture books and middle grade novel for Book Expo America 2015. Held at the Jacob Javits Center in NYC May 27th – 30th, it’s the biggest book fair in the US. Agents, publishers and book buyers from all over the world will attend and (hopefully) buy foreign and translation rights to hundreds (thousands?) of new books. The country of honor this year is China, which is really exciting. It will be fun to see what the Chinese think of American writers!

What makes this especially exciting for me is that it’s the first time any of my books will appear there. And, since my books are self-published, it’s wonderful to have an agent representing them. This is a boon for all self-publishers, because it shows the publishing community is finally starting to recognize them. Woo-hoo!

I’ll keep you posted. In the meantime, happy spring, everyone!

Lessons from a Failed KDP Select Free Promo

Useful Tips for Self-Published Authors

Kristen Pham

shutterstock_120732190In the new year, I used three of my KDP free days to promote the first book in The Conjurors Series, The Society of Imaginary Friends. I was determined to put everything I had into the campaign in order to maximize downloads of my free book and hopefully convince readers to continue with my series. I’ve been exclusively selling my books through Amazon since I began self-publishing, and have been toying with the idea of making my books available with other retailers (and thereby enabling the first book in the series to be perma free). This promotion was my final push to see if I could get a serious number of downloads of my free book using Amazon alone.

I’ve never spent more time (or money) promoting my free days, than this round. I submitted my book’s info to more than 70 sites that list free ebooks, and paid for placement on…

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Adventures in Self-Publishing, Part 2

Greetings, friends, readers, and fellow writers.  Just wanted to let you know I’m still trying to publish my picture books on amazon’s createspace.  So far, I’ve exported the files from my IPAD–where I created them as epub files on Apple’s Book Creator–to my I MAC.  At first I exported them as PDFs, but this didn’t work well because once I imported the files to createspace, the images turned out to be less than the 300 DPI CS recommends.  So I asked my son to help me increase the resolution on my books.  He was able to do this, but I’m not sure how.  I think he used Adobe Acrobat Professional to convert the raw epub files into PDFs that were higher quality (more DPI) than the PDFs I’d exported directly from BookCreator on my IPAD.

The first book–Isabel Plum: Ichthyologist–looks good now, but it has a couple of mistakes/typos/misaligned words I have to fix.  Problem is I don’t know where to fix them.  Surely not on the PDFs (they’re inalterable, right?).  So I need to find the raw epub file he uploaded to adobe acrobat before converting it to a PDF.  Sure, I know where the epub file is, but does this mean I fix the original, resend it to my Macbook and then ask my son to reconvert the whole thing to a new PDF using adobe acrobat to produce good quality (at least 300 DPI) images?

I hope this makes sense to you, fellow readers and writers.  If it does, you probably know more about these technical issues than I do.  I just hope that by writing about my difficulties those of you with similar problems will feel encouraged.  I’m NOT gonna give up.  I’m not.  I just wish this stuff weren’t so hard.  I want to get back to writing, to illustrating, to actually completing my books.

Goodbye for now–and happy weekend.

Meet Aviva Gittle, Self-Pub Author with a Mission!

New children’s author interview–enjoy!

Jessica Schaub Books

The world is full of writers, from devoted list-makers to poets and short stories to novels and beyond. For as many writers there are, it’s not too far fetched to claim that there are as many purposes behind the writing. Personally speaking, I write because it helps me organize my thoughts…I just happen to think in a story format.

Once the decision is made to take writing from sketching little stories and poems for our own enjoyment to the next level – that elusive publication. With Self publishing making waves in the industry, these stories are sometimes mistaken (sometimes not) as lesser in quality. As such, self-published authors have come together as a community in several different formats and in online forums. Aviva Gittle is one such author with a heart for helping other self-published authors.

Aviva is my next featured author. Along with amazing stories for children, Aviva has…

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