A-R International: Mary Smith

Books: Publishing, Reading, Writing

Mary Smith
Authors-Readers International

I was born on Islay. My family moved to the mainland when I was seven and I grew up in Castle Douglas in south west Scotland.

I worked for ten years with Oxfam in Lancashire, fundraising and campaigning on development issues. The next ten years were spent first in Pakistan, then Afghanistan, where I worked for a small health organisation primarily concerned with leprosy and mother and childcare. My experiences living in those countries inform much of my writing.

I returned to Castle Douglas when my son was five years old so he could have somewhere to put down his own roots.

I have always written. As a child I wrote adventure stories in my own books made from wallpaper off-cuts and as a teenager I wrote very bad love poetry. For most of my life I’ve kept a journal. While still working in Afghanistan I…

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More on climate change grief

Interesting blog!

Being in Nature


My blog post about feeling grief about climate change and environmental degradation got a mixed response.   I had people messaging me to tell me I needed to meditate more and relax.   This response made me look further into the issue of grief over climate change.

In an article about managing the distress of climate change here Jennifer Atkinson, a  lecturer in environmental humanities at the University of Washington said:-

“The message we get is that our grief is somehow deviant.  But grief is a normal, healthy response to loss, examples of which are easy to find in a warming world.”

At the conclusion of the article she says:-

“Confronting grief takes more courage than looking away, which is the prevailing societal response to climate change.  And buried underneath that grief is something hopeful.”

In another article  Hope and Mourning in the anthropocene I read:-

“We argue that recognising ecological grief…

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Breaking News: Around Indian Country

Important story worth reading.

Lara Trace Hentz

The artist, Remy, installed reproductions of gruesome photographs from newspapers on a wall in the city’s historic district. The historic preservation board has ruled that the works must be removed within two weeks.

SANTA FE, New Mexico — About five years ago, a set of posters appeared on an adobe wall on the corner of Old Pecos Trail and Camino Lejo — an intersection that sits at the gateway to Santa Fe’s famed Museum Hill and is situated on one of the city’s main arteries. The signs were put up by a local organization called Santa Feans for Justice in Palestine, and depicted pro-Palestinian slogans and images, including images of Palestinian children who were killed during Operation Protective Edge, a 2014 military campaign by Israel Defense Forces in Gaza.

The posters were soon torn down by an objector, and a years-long campaign ensued.

That is, until January 4, when a…

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A-R International: Betty Boyd Caroli

I’ve met this author and her in-depth historical knowledge is impressive. A very important read.

Books: Publishing, Reading, Writing

Betty Boyd Caroli
Authors-Readers International

A graduate of Oberlin College, Betty Caroli holds a master’s degree in Mass Communications from the Annenberg School of the University of Pennsylvania and a Ph.D. in American Civilization from New York University. A Fulbright scholar to Italy, she also held fellowships and grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute, the Hoover Presidential Library, the LBJ Foundation, and others. After studying in Salzburg, Austria and Perugia, Italy (but before joining the faculty at the City University of New York), she taught in Palermo and Rome, Italy.

Caroli’s book tour promoting Lady Bird and Lyndon took her to the Texas Book Festival in Austin, Texas; to Dallas, where she spoke to an audience of 650 as part of the Authors Live! Series; to the Paragraphs Bookstore in Mt. Vernon, Ohio; to…

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Top Publishing Trends for 2020

Excellent tips here!

Plaisted Publishing House

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

Written Word Media (WMD) recently published a must-read article with the top publishing industry trends for the new year, written by Clayton Noblit. I am sharing here a summary that includes their main points.

1. Audiobooks will continue to gain popularity, and more indie authors will invest

A 2019 survey revealed that half of all Americans over the age of 12 have listened to an audiobook in the past year. Additionally, audiobook listeners trended younger. Fifty-five percent of listeners were below the age of 45. The survey stats showed an increase from 2018, and the expectation is that audio will continue to grow.

With better access to audiobook creation and distribution, WMD expects to see more audiobooks in the marketplace in 2020. Marketing audiobooks remains a challenge for authors but effective marketing will become more important…

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Once again a beautiful and heartfelt piece!

Being in Nature

Last night I dreamt I was in some kind of group therapy situation where people were asked to sing out their grief.   People with hollow eyes got up one by one and sung tearful laments to loved ones that had died – husbands, children, friends.  It was heartfelt and deeply sad.

When it was my turn I found I couldn’t sing.   I couldn’t find any words and besides I wasn’t sure just which aspect of my grief was I meant to sing about.   Was it the personal grief I have experienced when key people in my life have died or been afflicted in some terrible way or was I at the group therapy session because I needed to express the grief that now gnaws at my heart?medicine-wheel-copy[2]

I slept fitfully for the rest of the night and woke with my mind full of thoughts about what I am currently grieving. …

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A-R International: Paul F. Butler

Books: Publishing, Reading, Writing

Paul F. Butler
Authors-Readers International

Paul Butler’s fiction is often “historical” in setting but also speaks directly to the twenty-first century whether exploring a Victorian missionary’s desire to replicate his own image in The Good Doctor (2014), the contradictions that lay behind early twentieth century notions of courage and cowardice in Titanic Ashes (2012) or our collective desire to both venerate and scapegoat the memory of woman in NaGeira (2006) in seventeenth century Ireland, England and Newfoundland. Butler’s work has appeared on the judges’ lists for Canada Reads, the Relit Longlist for three consecutive years (2011 for Cupids; 2010 for Hero; and 2009 for 1892), the Newfoundland and Labrador Book Awards shortlist and he was a winner in the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador Arts and Letters Awards four times between 2003 and 2008 at which time he retired from the competition to be literary representative…

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Scam Publishers…Beware.

Important for authors to know about!

Plaisted Publishing House

Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer Beware®

I’ve been expending a lot of words and time lately warning about the latest scam phenomenon to hit the writing world: fake publishing and marketing companies that, through outrageous prices and worthless services, extract enormous amounts of money from unwary writers.

Based in the Philippines (despite their apparent US addresses, phone numbers, and telemarketer names) and focusing primarily on small press and self-published authors (particularly authors who’ve published with one of the Author Solutions imprints), these companies recruit writers with relentless–and highly deceptive–phone and email solicitations. Some do provide the services authors pay for, albeit at seriously inflated prices and often of poor quality. Others just take the money and run. I’m hearing from a growing number of writers who’ve paid five figures in fees to one–or, in some cases, more than one–of these scams, with next to nothing to show for it.

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