Brian Brennan – 3 new reprints now available

Brian Brennan has been featured previously on Reading Recommendations five times, and is back now with information on how he’s managing to keep his traditionally published out-of-print books in print.

Don’t Let Your Books Go Out of Print!

By Brian Brennan

That’s the advice I would give to any author who receives a statement from their trade publisher listing their book’s status as “OP.”

I received three such statements from my publisher, Fifth House, in 2014:

One was for Alberta Originals: Stories of Albertans Who Made a Difference, a book of biographical profiles that had sold more than 5,000 copies after it was published in 2001.

The second was for Scoundrels and Scallywags: Characters From Alberta’s Past, which had become the most successful of all my books, with more than 10,000 copies sold after publication in 2002.

The third was for Boondoggles, Bonanzas and Other Alberta Stories, which sold a comparatively modest 3,000 copies after publication in 2003.

I didn’t like the idea of my titles going out of print. I was particularly saddened to see Scoundrels disappear from the catalogues because it had been my favourite. Villains always make for more interesting stories than those who walk the straight and narrow. I decided I would keep all my titles available by self-publishing them as ebooks.

Human Powered Design, an independent Canadian company that specializes in turning manuscripts and print-design files into ebooks, did the EPUB conversions for me. It then sent the titles to Amazon (Kindle), Kobo, Apple (iTunes) and OverDrive, the American company that distributes ebooks to libraries across North America. That put the books back into circulation, at least, but left me feeling it was not enough. As much as I enjoy reading books on my iPad – especially while away on vacation – I still like to hold a print book in my hands and savour the tactile enjoyment of leafing through the paper pages. I believe others feel the same way.

Enter CreateSpace the on-demand publishing company owned by Amazon. I sent CreateSpace the press-ready cover and interior PDFs I had asked Human Powered Design to generate for me after it did the EPUB conversions. And for no charge, CreateSpace uploaded the PDF files onto its platform, making them available as print-on-demand books that could be purchased from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Ingram, indiCo and other retailers.

So how does CreateSpace make money if it doesn’t charge anything upfront for publishing books on its platform? It waits until the paperbacks start selling and then collects a percentage. In most instances, this works out to about 60 per cent of list price for CreateSpace, which leaves 40 per cent for the author. This arrangement suits me just fine. Fifth House used to pay me a royalty of 10 per cent for my paperbacks.

The CreateSpace versions of my three books resemble the Fifth House versions because I have the PDFs of the original designs. Without these, I could still have republished the books because CreateSpace provides do-it-yourself authors with free tools, including a cover creator and interior reviewer. For a fee, I could also have availed of the professional services CreateSpace offers for designing book covers and interiors.

All three of my books focus on the colourful personalities and social history of Alberta. If you’d like to learn more about or purchase any of them, either as paperbacks or ebooks, here are the links:

Alberta Originals
Scoundrels and Scallywags
Boondoggles and Bonanzas

My thanks to Susan for allowing me to take up some of her valuable online space to post this.

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My Camino Walk – a Goodreads Giveaway!

Reading Recommendations-promoted author, Timothy Phillips, is releasing his memoir/travel book in a print edition! There’s a Goodreads Giveaway going on for this at their site …

Books: Publishing, Reading, Writing

Last year, IslandCatEditions published Timothy L. Phillips travel memoir, My Camino Walk, A Way to Healing in eBook format. Now it will soon be released in print format and, to celebrate, 3 copies will be available in a Goodreads Giveaway, open for entry to those members in Canada, the US and UK.

For more information about Tim’s book and all other books published by IslandCatEditions and IslandShorts please visit: IslandCatEditions

Goodreads Book Giveaway

My Camino Walk by Timothy L.  Phillips

My Camino Walk

by Timothy L. Phillips

Being released October 25 2017

Giveaway ends in 15 days (November 06, 2017)

3 copies available, 20 people requesting

giveaway details »

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A one-day giveaway

A terrific offer from a great author who has been promoted numerous times on this blog! I’ve read everything Kevin Brennan has written and enjoyed every word. So get on over to Kevin’s blog, choose a title, then read and review it for him. It doesn’t get any easier than that!

WHAT THE HELL

Who wants a free book?

Today and today only I’ll give away copies of Fascination, Town Father, and In No Particular Order to anyone willing to write an honest review.

In other words, these would be ex post facto ARCs.

If you or someone you know wants to volunteer, comment on this post and indicate how I can contact you. I’ll then provide an ebook in whatever format you prefer.

One title per participant, and you must post your review on Amazon.com. You can also post it in other venues, but Amazon’s where the rubber meets the road, and these books are in desperate need of reviews.

Spread the word and send your friends over to grab their copies. And don’t forget to alert them: if they fail to write a review, I will hunt them down and belittle their children and pets. This is a quid pro…

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Lawrence Schwartzwald – update on a new collection of photographs

Lawrence Schwartzwald is a professional photographer who was previously featured on Reading Recommendations in Nov. 2016 when he released his book, The Art of Reading. He’s back now to tell us about a limited edition Zine he has recently published.

cover of Zine, Reading New York by Lawrence Schwartzwald

Reading New York
by Lawrence Schwartzwald

READING NEW YORK, 2017, a Zine, 32pp. edition of 160, avail at DASHWOOD (store and web), McNally Jackson, Plus 81 Gallery (Chintown), ArtBook Bookstore, PS 1 MoMA, Queens, NY

back cover – Reading New York

Lawrence’s promo links:
Website
Facebook
Instagram: lawrenceschwartzwald

I was very pleased to receive a copy of this new Zine directly from Lawrence and decided to take my own “reading” photo – with Reading Recommendations-promoted Poet, Frank Beltrano. It was through Frank I originally learned of Lawrence and his photography, so this particular photo is very fitting.

A Literary A-Z : A

Here’s a new list of favourites from Beetleypete, and this time it’s all things literary! Since I already write this blog of recommendations, I won’t be playing along on a daily basis this time, but I do recommend to all readers of my blog that they check out Pete’s blog, subscribe to it, and follow his daily alphabetical choices. Make your own comments, too, and include your selections in the mix. Enjoy!

beetleypete

Thanks to a suggestion from Robbie, writer and cake-maker extraordinaire, I am embarking on a new A-Z. This time, it is about books and authors. You can use the title of any book, fiction or non-fiction, or the surname of any author, as long as it begins with ‘A’. For readers who do not have English as a first language, feel free to include foreign titles. Hopefully, we will all discover lots more about literature, and find many new books and authors to investigate. Before you play along, please check out Robbie’s excellent blog. https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/

I am starting with one of the greatest anti-war books ever written. The powerful novel about the First World War by Eric Maria Remarque, ‘All Quiet On The Western Front’, published in 1929. This tells the story of excited young soldiers from their time at school, through to their harsh military training, and eventual involvement…

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Kevin Brennan – update on a new collection of essays

Kevin Brennan has previously been featured on Reading Recommendations a number of times, as well as being an All-Star Author and on the list of
Reading Recommendations Revisited.

I don’t make any bones about it – Kevin Brennan is one of my very favourite authors writing today! So it’s always a pleasure to promote any new books he happens to publish, like this one right here …

In No Particular Order: A Memoir
by Kevin Brennan

It’s true that life is linear, but the living of it is all over the map. In this memoir-in-vignettes, novelist Kevin Brennan (Parts Unknown, Yesterday Road) examines his life the way memories occur in the wild: in no particular order. Whether it’s recalling high school humiliations, ups and downs in love and romance, or unique interactions with the human race at home and abroad, Brennan both entertains and moves the reader with moments of unexpected poignancy and full-tilt humor. In No Particular Order is a deconstructed memoir, like no other because it looks at life as it really is — a kaleidoscope of individual moments.

For more information about Kevin and his publications, as well as more about this new eBook, check out his blog, What the Hell.

Purchase a copy from:
Amazon

Margaret Mackey

Margaret Mackey

What is your latest release and what genre is it? One Child Reading: My Auto-Bibliography / nonfiction

Quick description: “The miracle of the preserved word, in whatever medium—print, audio text, video recording, digital exchange—means that it may transfer into new times and new places.” — From the Introduction

Margaret Mackey draws together memory, textual criticism, social analysis, and reading theory in an extraordinary act of self-study. In One Child Reading, she makes a singular contribution to our understanding of reading and literacy development. Seeking a deeper sense of what happens when we read, Mackey revisited the texts she read, viewed, listened to, and wrote as she became literate in the 1950s and 1960s in St. John’s, Newfoundland. This tremendous sweep of reading included school texts, knitting patterns, musical scores, and games, as well as hundreds of books. The result is not a memoir, but rather a deftly theorized exploration of how a reader is constructed. One Child Reading is an essential book for librarians, classroom teachers, those involved in literacy development in both scholarly and practical ways, and all serious readers.

Brief biography:
Margaret Mackey is Professor in the School of Library and Information Studies at the University of Alberta. She has published widely on the subject of young people’s reading and their multimedia and digital literacies. A voracious reader, she lives in Edmonton.

Links to buy Margaret’s book:
University of Alberta Press
Amazon

Margaret’s promo links:
Website
What are you working on now?
University of Alberta Press

What are you working on now?
At this moment (apart from moving house and closing my office), I’m just getting started on a project that has the potential to be very intriguing. In the fall I will be recruiting some undergraduates to create a digital map for me of a place that was very important to their early literacy. It can be a real-life landscape or a fictional one (acknowledging that some urban children don’t spend much time out of doors). I will invite them to annotate their map with any kind of records they can come up with – written comments, photographs, videos, audio, interactive ways to “travel” around the landscape, and anything else they can think of. I’ll interview them about the map: why they chose this landscape, what makes the annotations meaningful to them, what they remember more broadly about their literate lives at the time this map was meaningful to them. Pilot work has established that this method of approach can bring out expanded memories of an important stage in developing literacy; and while it is a tool to help articulate these memories, it also allows for some very eloquent forms of expression in its own right. I’m excited to get going on the full-stage project. The idea arose from the work I did for One Child Reading; I was very surprised to re-discover how important my own landscape had been to me and I began to wonder if it was the same for other readers. The pilot work suggests that the answer is yes.

Margaret’s reading recommendation:
I am very happy to recommend a wonderful book called Lakeland: Journeys into the Soul of Canada. It’s by Allan Casey and was published in 2009. Casey talks about the huge significance of lakes to many, many Canadian psyches. He begins with his “own” lake in Saskatchewan and visits at least one lake in every province except PEI. Some of these are working lakes, others are cottage country lakes, and some are just wild. I haven’t been to every lake he mentions but I’ve been to a number of them, and I’ve also driven across Canada three times, which certainly gives anyone a strong sense of what a lake-bound country this is. I don’t think you would need this level of experience to enjoy the book, but it would certainly help a reader if they loved at least one lake, wherever it is.

Eileen Bell – update on the third book in a series

Eileen Bell has been featured previously several times on Reading Recommendations, first in Jan. 2014 as part of The Apocalyptic Four, then with news about the first two books in her Marie Jenner Mystery series, here and here. She’s back now to tell us about the third book in this series, just being released.

Stalking the Dead
by E.C. Bell
Published by Tyche Books
Genre: Paranormal Mystery, 3rd in a series

Marie Jenner is going home.

When Marie’s slightly-more-than-boss, James Lavall, decides it is vital that he speak to her mother, face to face, about Marie and all her secrets, she follows him to Fort McMurray.

What Marie doesn’t realize is that her stalkery ex-boyfriend, Arnie Stillwell, has gone home, too. And he’s managed to get himself killed just about the time James rolled into town, making James “a person of interest” in the Stillwell murder investigation.

Marie’s going to have to figure out who really killed Arnie to get James off. She’s also going to have to figure out a safe way to move Arnie’s spirit on to the next plane of existence, because the last thing she needs is for him to go all stalkery on her now that he’s dead.

Murder can really put a kink in a Jenner family reunion.

Stalking the Dead is an entertaining mash up of a thrilling PI novel with a creepy ghost story set in the rough oil town of Fort McMurray. Genre-bending doesn’t get any better than this.”
Wayne Arthurson, Author of the Fall From Grace and other novels in the Leo Desroches crime series.

Where to purchase Eileen’s novel:
Ebook and Print:
Amazon.com
Amazon.ca
Ebook only:
Kobo
Tyche Books

Paul Butler – update on a new novel

Paul Butler was previously promoted on Reading Recommendations in Sept. 2014 and Jan. 2015. He’s back now to tell us about a new novel that’s been published.

The Widow’s Fire
by Paul F. Butler
Published by Inanna Publication

The Widow’s Fire explores the shadow side of Jane Austen’s final novel Persuasion, disrupting its happy ending and throwing moral certainties off balance. We join the action close to the moment when Austen draws away for the last time and discretely gives an overview of the oncoming marriage between heroine Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth. This, it transpires in The Widow’s Fire, is merely the beginning of a journey. Soon dark undercurrents disturb the order and symmetry of Austen’s world. The gothic flavor of the period, usually satirized by Austen, begins to assert itself. Characters far below the notice of Anne, a baronet’s daughter, have agendas of their own. Before long, we enter into the realm of scandal and blackmail. Anne Elliot must come to recognize the subversive power of those who have been hitherto invisible to her — servants, maids and attendants — before she can defend her fiancé from an accusation too dreadful to be named. Captain Wentworth himself must learn the skills of living on land; the code of honour and secrecy which has protected him on deck no longer applies on the streets of Bath.

Where to purchase copies:
Inanna Publications
Amazon

Paul Butler HB Creativity

Paul Bailey will be launching his novel, The Widow’s Fire, in Toronto on May 24th as part of a group launch of new books from Inanna Publications!

David A. Poulsen – a new novel in his mystery series

David A. Poulsen has visited Reading Recommendations many times over the years, and I’m always happy to host him here again whenever he is publishing a new book.
(After all, I’ve known Dave for nearly 25 years, since I was a sales rep for his novel,
Don’t Fence Me In!)
He’s back now to tell us about the second novel in his Cullen and Cobb Mystery series.

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Dead Air: A Cullen and Cobb Mystery
by David A. Poulsen
Published by Dundurn Press

There’s no such thing as bad press …

Ex-cop turned private detective Mike Cobb is hired as the personal bodyguard of right-wing radio celebrity Buckley-Rand Larmer, who has been receiving a string of vicious, graphic threats. Once again, Cobb recruits crime journalist Adam Cullen, this time to dig into Larmer’s past and find out who might have a grudge against him.

Soon it becomes evident that Cullen and Cobb have more to contend with than the not-so-veiled threats. When Larmer’s associate turns up dead, the broadcaster is charged with the killing, but Cullen believes the murder might be related to a series of suspicious deaths of right-wing media figures going back years. As layers of secrets and lies peel back, Cullen and Cobb have more than Larmer’s guilt or innocence to worry about. A vicious killer is out there somewhere, poised to strike again.

Where to purchase copies:
Dundurn Press
Amazon
Chapters/Indigo