Thought for the Day:
“Trust yourself. Create the kind of self that you will be happy to live with all your life. Make the most of yourself by fanning the tiny, inner sparks of possibility into flames of achievement.”
~ Golda Meir ~
Gifts for My Writer Friends:
If you are interested in trying your hand at non-fiction but have trouble coming up with ideas, HERE is a great post by Stephanie Bearce at Non-Fiction Ninjas that has wonderful links. Some, like the one titled Forgotten History, are just plain fun reading.
Julie Glover has a post with Quick Dialogue Tips over at Writers in the Storm that are worth your time. You can find it HERE.
Gigi Collins knows something about Finding Comp Titles and has a good post HERE on the Good Story Company that will help you with that.
I hope my post last week wasn’t too whiny with the information about my back. I had my MRI on Friday, and I am being referred to a different department. They have found some pretty significant problems, and I’m confident I will get the help I need going forward. So I’m still doing a lot of reading, watching a lot of great baseball (the Giants are my team, and they are having a spectacular year so far — knock on wood — not that I am superstitious or anything), and looking forward to Wimbledon, which will be starting in just over a week. Also, I have a perfectly good excuse to stay in while we have been having a pretty serious heat wave hitting 109 a couple days in a row with some other days over 104. But, heh heh, it’s a dry heat. That’s what we tell ourselves anyway. The Sacramento area is really a beautiful place most of the time, but summers are not my favorite time. It’s a good time to lay low, watch TV, and read good books, so a perfect time for me.
Last week, I offered a copy of Annie Lumsden, the Girl from the Sea by David Almond and illustrated by Beatrice Alamagna to one of you. This week’s winner is Jenni Enzor. Congratulations, Jenni! I will get your book out to you soon. If you don’t know Jenni, she is a writer and educator and blogs about books, often as part of the MMGM crowd. Check out her blog HERE.
I mentioned last week that I was reading a book called Six Feet Below Zero by Ena Jones that I won from the blog called From the Mixed Up Files…of Middle-Grade Authors, and that I was enjoying very much. I finished it and want to tell you a bit about it this week.
Middle-schoolers Rosie and Baker have been living with their Great-grandmother Ida ever since their parents died a few years earlier. Great-Grammy loves the kids and takes really good care of them, even preparing them for her eventual demise. But after some visits to the doctor, she gets busy stocking the house with plenty of food and anything else the kids might need — paper products, snacks, signed checks, passwords to her accounts, even notes to the school if they need to be absent. She buys them all cell phones, something she has never let them have. She sets up automatic payments for utilities and arranges a driver and car if the kids need it. She buys a big chest freezer that is big enough for the kids to put her body in so they can hunker down and wait for a while if she does die. But she can’t seem to find her new will. She put it someplace safe and then forgot where. Their grandmother, Ida’s only child, is not a very nice grandmother or person for that matter. The kids refer to her not as Gram Hesper, but as Grim Hesper, an appropriate name. Great-Grammy wants to be sure the kids are not left in Grim Hesper’s clutches, so everyone is trying to reach the kids’ Aunt Tilly, a writer who often disappears for months at a time. But no one has been able to reach her before the worst happens — Great-Grammy dies and the kids put her in the freezer and try to go on with their lives, going to school, fixing meals from the freezer. No, not that one. The one that is full of food. So what could possibly go wrong?
I just love this book. It is so clever and smart. With such a grim topic, it is funny, funny, funny all the way through. I would love to know how Ms. Jones ever came up with the idea for this book. Her writing is terrific. The characters are very believable, the dialogue is absolutely natural, there is tension on every page and lots of “Oh, no!” moments that will keep readers riveted. I suggest you get hold of a copy as soon as you can. This is such a great book!!!
I have no giveaway this week. I’m keeping this one. Don’t forget to check for other Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday posts at Greg Pattridge’s blog HERE.