Thursday, November 8, 2007

The Fountain Pen, Issue 11, November 2007

In this Issue...

From Mayra's Desk

Interview with Terry Doherty, Founder of The Reading Tub, Inc
Interview with Virginia S. Grenier, Editor of Stories for Children Magazine
Interview with Andrea Sisco, co-Founder of Armchair Interviews
"On Writing Horror AND Children's Tales", by Mayra Calvani
"The Responsibilities of A Writer," by R.J. Barker
Mayra's Reviews

From Mayra's Desk...

Dear Readers,

Would you believe Christmas is just around the corner?! It sure feels like the older I get, the faster time passes.

October was a busy month with me going on a virtual book tour to promote the release of my paranormal thriller, Dark Lullaby. It was my first virtual tour and it was a learning experience. I was astounded by the high traffic it brought to my website--over 10,000 hits in one month! If you missed my tour and would like to read some of my interviews, here are some links:
The Book Connection
Paranormal Watch
Melanie Nilles' Blog
Fiction Scribe
In Detail with Nikki Leigh

I'm taking a rest this month and will be going on another virtual book tour this December, this time to promote the release of my first children's picture book, The Magic Violin. Join me on my tour next month for a chance to win a print copy of The Magic Violin. I will be posting my tour schedule on my blog, Mayra's Secret Bookcase, at the end of November. To be eligible to win the book, all you have to do is write a comment at the end of my guest posts. The more you comment, the more chances of winning. I'll announce the winner on Christmas Day!

Before saying goodbye, let me just mention a little change I will make to the newsletter from now on. Instead of posting the entire interviews and articles, I will simply post a link to them. This will keep the newsletter shorter and prevent you from having to scroll down long texts in order to find what you specifically want to read. I know this can be quite frustrating at times. I hope you will appreciate this.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day and enjoy that delicious turkey with gravy and pumpkin pie!

Warm regards,


The Magic Violin is now out and available for purchase. Consider buying this book as a Christmas gift for a child--especially if the child plays or would like to play the violin!
For the full press release and blurb, visit my website Mayra's Secret Bookcase.
The publisher's purchasing page can be found here, but the book can be ordered from any brick and mortar bookstore and will be available from Amazon and B&N soon as well.



*Interview with Terry Doherty, The Reading Tub, Inc.
Part I
Part II

*Interview with Virginia Grenier, Editor of Stories for Children Magazine
Read the full interview here.

*Interview with Andrea Sisco, Founder of Armchair Interviews.
Read the full interview here.



*A lot of people ask me how I can write both horror and children's tales. I tried to answer this question on M.D. Benoit's Blog, Life's Weirder than Fiction.

*"The Responsibilities of A Writer,"
by R. J. Barker

Dear Sir.

Thank you for your application to become A Write! We are happy to tell you that you have been successful. However, it is imperative that we keep to strict guidelines in order to protect our trade. I have supplied a copy of these guidelines, please read these five simple rules carefully and do not let us down.

1) Whether at a dinner party or merely enjoying the waxing moon on a balmy night with a young lady--you must remember at all times--that you are A Writer!

Tell people, tell them as often as possible and with an emphasis on the dramatic. Suitable conversational cues for the beginner can be:

"I'm John, you are...?"
"Peter, I am A Writer!"

"What shall we order?"
"This menu is terribly written, it has no plot arc. I know, for I am A Writer!"

"So what do you do then?"
"I" (pause for effect) "am A Writer!"

"A funny thing happened to me the other day."
"Tell me of it, it may provide inspiration. Lack of inspiration is death to A Writer, for that is what I am!"

"Why haven't you paid your credit card bill, sir?"
"I am A Writer!"

"I'm tired now dear, I'm off to bed."

2) A Writer and someone who writes are two entirely different things. Any fool can put words down on paper. A Writer is an artist, he is A Writer whether he has written a word or not. Be The Writer, don't bother yourself with the technicalities.

3) Do not listen to the critic. They may try to make it seem like they want to be helpful, this is a lie. You know within your heart that you are A Writer, a genius and above them all. Pillory them for their foolishness when they do not see the beauty in your words. Strike at them and know you are in the right for you my firend, are A Writer.

4) Value creativity beyond all things. Be true to your vision. You are not bound by earthly rules such as grammar or spelling. Fly high on the wings of what you know to be beyond all comparison. Some may not be able to read it. That is their loss, not yours.

5) When you come across others whose talent may be near or even (however unlikely this is) equal, hate them. Hate them well. Your badge and complimentary fountain pen will follow via separate post (you will need to sign for these).


Nefariouos T. Cumblepot
P.S. If you are A Poet please follow the same rules but substitute 'Poet' for 'Writer'. We all work from the same office and sometimes the letters get mixed up a tad.

R.J.Barker is a sometime journalist, occasional Editor and slack writer. His 'Dead' Dave York novellas have been described as 'A noir Terry Pratchett' and the first novel length story in that series is due to be published in 2008. You can read more of his nonsense on MySpace--Leave a comment and then he'll feel like people are paying attention which makes him all warm and fuzzy inside.


Mayra's Reviews
Princes Caitlin's Tiara (picture book)
Little Skink's Tail (picture book)
Meerkats Don't Fly (picture book)
Judgement Fire (mystery/detective)
Mortal Touch (paranormal)



Blogcritics High-profile community of bloggers
Reader Views Book reviews
Katie's Reading Paranormal fiction reviews
New Book Clubs Connecting Authors and Publishers With Book Clubs & Readers

The authors who are on virtual book tours with Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tours this month will be giving away free copies of their books on November 30th. Click here to get all the info and see the list of authors and their books.


Valerie said...

I enjoy your newsletter very much, especially this issue. I'm a big fan of Terry Prachett so you can be sure I will be looking up the work of R J Barker!!!


Mayra Calvani said...

Thanks so much for your comment, Valerie! I'm glad you enjoyed the issue.