THOUGHTFUL THURSDAY: The Sting Of Rejection

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When I began to get serious back in January of 2011 about my dream of one day being a published author, I jumped right in and tried my hand at writing a picture book. It was a cute story about this little dog who thought he could be a hero despite his size. I spent a fair amount of time and effort on that manuscript and polished it as much as an ignorant newbie writer could. That was mistake number one. I did not invest the time to learn the basics of HOW to write a good picture book story.

Mistake number two came when I started showing my virgin writing effort to friends and family. My “critique group”, as much as I valued their opinion, was not professionally qualified to review my story and tell me how to strengthen it.

Mistake number three came along when I decided in April of 2011 to submit that great manuscript of mine to the first publisher I came across. There was no detailed research behind my decision. I don’t even remember why I chose Clarion Books as my first “victim”, but I’m happy to report the editor I sent my little dog story to saved me from myself and rejected the notion that I was ready for publication.

Looking back at it now with a mindset born of investing some time and effort to actually study the finer points of writing, I can see I’m going to like this rejection party I was invited to attend. I think some writers see those rejection letters as the final nails in the coffin carrying their writing career to nowhere. I see it as a lesson to learn from or reject depending on how it truly relates to my work. And it seems I’m in good company.

I came across an entire group of well-known authors who, in their earlier writing careers, also suffered from receiving the negative nod on stories the world would never have had a chance to see if these authors had given up on their dreams of being published. How many do you recognize?

1. Louisa May Alcott was told to stick to her teaching as she would never succeed as a writer. She ignored that advice and went on to publish Little Women.

2. Shel Silverstein received a rejection letter stating his story would never sell because “it fell between the interests of children and adults”. He never gave up and went on to publish The Giving Tree (one of my favorite children’s books of all time).

3. I’m sure William Golding was surprised to read in one of the 21 rejection letters he received about Lord Of The Flies that his story was “an absurd and uninteresting fantasy which is rubbish and dull”.

4. Even Theodor Geisel, better known to children around the world as Dr. Seuss, must have dealt with moments of doubt when he opened one of his 27 rejection letters for And To Think I Saw It On Mulberry Street and read “this is too different from other juveniles on the market to warrant it’s selling”.

This rejection party is starting to get crowded with all these beloved authors stopping by to wave their rejection letters in the air. A piece of paper didn’t stop them from believing in themselves and their dreams. Need more proof that rejection letters don’t necessarily determine your worth as a writer? Check out how many rejection letters these authors received before their stories became best sellers…

1. The Tale Of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter…6 times.
2. Harry Potter And The Sorcerer’s Stone by J K Rowling…12 times.
3. Watership Down by Richard Adams…13 times.
4. Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach…18 times.
5. Dune by Frank Herbert…20 times.
6. The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks…24 times.
7. The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger…25 times.
8. A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle…26 times.
9. A Time To Kill by John Grisham…rejected by 12 publishers and 15 agents.
10. Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell…38 times.
11. The Help by Kathryn Stockett…60 times.
12. The Amber Room by Steve Berry…85 times.
13. Chicken Soup For The Soul by Jack Canfield & Mark Victor Hansen…140 times. (And if they had given up I wouldn’t have my own story published in the Angels Among Us edition that came out January 2013!)

And my personal favorite…

Jack London, the author of such classics as Call Of The Wild and White Fang, received nearly SIX HUNDRED rejection letters over the course of his writing career!

So you see? It’s not so much the actual rejection letter, but what you do with the information found inside. Will it inspire you to polish some more or step away from your dream? Does it challenge you to become a better writer or do you give up? Will you take it at face value and see how it applies to the body of work you envision creating or do you allow it to be the standard by which you judge your own writing ability?

I say we should celebrate the rejection letters for what they are…someone’s opinion of the particular story we are submitting…and be thankful we are in such good company. Now let’s get this party started…

 

fairy house
***DON’T FORGET! It’s week two of THE TWELVE WEEKS OF LUNADAR giveaway and this week you get a chance to win the cool fairie house shown above! Just click on the pile of presents to the right of this post and choose how you would like to enter the FREE giveaway. Winners will be announced every Monday in my INDIE AUTHOR’S JOURNEY post, so enter the FREE giveaway and check next Monday to see if you’ve won!***

***ALSO…it’s not too late to tell all your educator or school librarian friends about their chance to pick up a FREE copy of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound during my LUNADAR Pay It Forward FREE giveaway! I’m giving away THOUSANDS of ebook copies between now and Friday, November 2nd, in exchange for an honest review on Amazon. All they have to do is send me a Facebook message or email with their valid email address and I will send them their FREE copy, along with a copy of the Lunadar map I sketched. Hurry and share the good news about this FREE ebook giveaway before time runs out!***

***AND…it’s countdown time to the release of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound on 10/15/18! You can now pre-order your print copy through Amazon and other online retailers, so get your copy today!***

LUNADAR cover jpg

 

Ruler by day, a reluctant pirate by night, 18-year-old Princess Ariana fights for her subjects in the waterfall city of Lunadar. In a kingdom surrounded by fairies and mermaids, and ravaged by deadly Drundles, only a chosen few are trusted to guard her daughter, Candra, as the secret heir to the throne.

But it only takes one ill-fated meeting for Ariana to suddenly be plunged into an escalating web of secrets found in her father’s journal, a deadly kidnapping, and an ever-weakening resolve to turn her back on the call of the merman’s song.

With Ariana’s world falling apart and the future of Lunadar at stake, how will she bring her father’s murderer to justice and fulfill a deathbed promise to protect Lunadar’s legacy?

donna

 

International best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, LUNADAR: Homeward Bound (a YA fantasy), ebook edition, is now available from Amazon, with the print edition coming October 15, 2018.

FLASH FICTION TUESDAY: Here Kitty, Kitty

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Now on Tuesdays…at least for the foreseeable future…welcome to Flash Fiction Tuesday. In case you don’t know what flash fiction is, it is an extremely short story (sometimes created in 100 words or less) with a beginning, middle, and an ending,

But in my case, I write flash fiction with an open ending. I allow my readers to draw their own conclusion as to what happens.  This week’s story came to me in a dream and when I woke up, I had to write it down…

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Slate grey clouds slammed into scorched trees and darkened the sky as Dra’con slowly made his way up the rocky terrain. The stench from decaying flesh almost made him gag. Dra’con only stopped long enough to tighten the grimy cloth covering his lower face before sidestepping what looked like the remains of a coyote and continued his climb.

It had only been three days since the great fire, but already the villagers were nervously looking over their shoulders and wondering when will the creature strike next? The elders tried to calm the crowd with words even they didn’t believe. Dra’con knew there would be no stopping the panic once the others realized most of their food source had been wiped away with the flames. A quick death in battle was better than a slow, agonizing one as children and old ones would probably succumb first to the gnawing hunger of the upcoming winter with nothing to fill their bellies.

Dra’con concentrated so hard on not losing his footing as he climbed over charred tree limbs and stumbled around small boulders that, at first, he didn’t notice the fresh impressions made on the blackened forest floor. Moving closer to investigate, his foot tripped over a small root, causing him to come to a stop inside the crater. For a moment Dra’con didn’t understand what he was looking at, but the final realization made a cold sweat suddenly wash over him. Slowly drawing his weapon from his side, Dra’con carefully traced the massive paw print with the tip of his sword until it softly struck the other side of his boot. 

It was here.

And from what Dra’con could see, the beast was far larger than the elders had first supposed. No matter, the people depended on him to drive it from their land. The children thought him a hero and when had heroes ever turned their back on danger just because their bellies clinched with fear?

Taking a moment to kneel in the great beast’s footprint, Dra’con offered up a prayer to the gods before standing up. Then, thrusting the sword firmly back into its scabbard, he threw his shoulders back and with renewed determination, continued up the path in front of him. Only one thing was on his mind.

Here kitty, kitty…

***What happens next? What made the paw print? Will Dra’con be able to save the village? Or will the upcoming winter add to the body count? Share your comments and endings to this story below!***


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***WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT!***WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT!***

I’m happy to announce the winner of week one of my TWELVE WEEKS OF LUNADAR free giveaway! Ariel (aka author R M Archer) has won the cool bookmarks for entering my Rafflecopter FREEBIES giveaway! Congratulations Ariel…I’ve already sent you an email and once I receive your mailing address, those bookmarks will be winging their way to you soon! 

 

 

fairy house

 

***DON’T FORGET! It’s week two of THE TWELVE WEEKS OF LUNADAR giveaway and this week you get a chance to win the cool fairie house shown above! Just click on the pile of presents to the right of this post and choose how you would like to enter the FREE giveaway. Winners will be announced every Monday in my INDIE AUTHOR’S JOURNEY post, so enter the FREE giveaway and check next Monday to see if you’ve won!***

***ALSO…it’s not too late to tell all your educator or school librarian friends about their chance to pick up a FREE copy of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound during my LUNADAR Pay It Forward FREE giveaway! I’m giving away THOUSANDS of ebook copies between now and Friday, November 2nd, in exchange for an honest review on Amazon. All they have to do is send me a Facebook message or email with their valid email address and I will send them their FREE copy, along with a copy of the Lunadar map I sketched. Hurry and share the good news about this FREE ebook giveaway before time runs out!*** 

***AND…it’s countdown time to the release of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound on 10/15/18! You can now pre-order your print copy through Amazon and other online retailers, so get your copy today!***

 

LUNADAR cover jpg.jpg

 

Ruler by day, a reluctant pirate by night, 18-year-old Princess Ariana fights for her subjects in the waterfall city of  Lunadar. In a kingdom surrounded by fairies and mermaids, and ravaged by deadly Drundles, only a chosen few are trusted to guard her daughter, Candra, as the secret heir to the throne.

But it only takes one ill-fated meeting for Ariana to suddenly be plunged into an escalating web of secrets found in her father’s journal, a deadly kidnapping, and an ever-weakening resolve to turn her back on the call of the merman’s song.

With Ariana’s world falling apart and the future of Lunadar at stake, how will she bring her father’s murderer to justice and fulfill a deathbed promise to protect Lunadar’s legacy?

 

donna

 

International best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, LUNADAR: Homeward Bound (a YA fantasy), ebook edition, is now available from Amazon, with the print edition coming October 15, 2018.

AN INDIE AUTHOR’S JOURNEY: Book Marketing, Phase Two

book marketing.jpg

 

I’m delving into the world of indie publishing. Some authors go the quicker route and use a source like CreateSpace or Kindle Direct to immediately get their books out there.
There’s nothing wrong going that route, but I’ve decided to take a different path.

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I’ve had a number of accomplishments this past week. Here are a few:

  1. I reached the magical double-digit book reviews on Amazon for LUNADAR: Homeward Bound. This allows me to work on rolling out Phase Two of my book marketing. Many of the low-cost book promotion sites I plan on using require at least ten Amazon reviews before participation is allowed.
  2. My ebook can now be found all over the web in places like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books A Million and Google books, but also on Itsi.com (an educational store), Book Shout, Booktopia, Goodreads, Basic Books, TygPress, and dozens of international online retailers. It’s kind of amusing to see LUNADAR: Homeward Bound listed in so many other languages.
  3. With the official print release set for October 15th, my book is available for pre-order right now through most online retailers. 
  4. My LUNADAR Pay It Forward FREE Giveaway for educators and librarians is in full swing with a number of schools around the country already participating, with a chance of their schools winning one of five autographed copies of my book as well as maybe one of my FREE school visits! To learn more, click on the link.
  5. It’s week two of my TWELVE WEEKS OF LUNADAR. Last week’s winner of a set of cool bookmarks is Ariel (aka author R M Archer). She will be receiving her prize sometime next week. This week’s FREEBIE giveaway is a faerie house. To enter the TWELVE WEEKS OF LUNADAR giveaway, just click on the pile of presents to the right of this post.
  6. I have a few author events in the works such as a costume themed book signing at the Book Market in Sevierville, Tn on Saturday, October 27th from 11-4 pm; McKay’s Bookstore on Tuesday, October 30th from 9-11:30; and I’m finalizing a possible book signing at Barnes & Noble in December by partnering with one of my local elementary schools. 

 

Next week I will share my list of 25 free or low-cost book promotion and marketing sites any poor gal should use when trying to get the word out about her latest book…

LUNADAR cover jpg

 

Ruler by day, a reluctant pirate by night, 18-year-old Princess Ariana fights for her subjects in the waterfall city of Lunadar. In a kingdom surrounded by fairies and mermaids, and ravaged by deadly Drundles, only a chosen few are trusted to guard her daughter, Candra, as the secret heir to the throne.

But it only takes one ill-fated meeting for Ariana to suddenly be plunged into an escalating web of secrets found in her father’s journal, a deadly kidnapping, and an ever-weakening resolve to turn her back on the call of the merman’s song.

With Ariana’s world falling apart and the future of Lunadar at stake, how will she bring her father’s murderer to justice and fulfill a deathbed promise to protect Lunadar’s legacy?

 

donna

 

International best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, LUNADAR: Homeward Bound (a YA fantasy), ebook edition, is now available from Amazon, with the print edition coming October 15, 2018.

 

THOUGHTFUL THURSDAY: Helping Hands

 

 

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Relaxing this past weekend gave me a lot of time to think. To hang out with nature. And to remember. I woke up this morning feeling refreshed and realized I had dreamed about hands last night.

 

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Helping hands…you know…the kind that always seems to be around when you need them. Loving hands that welcome us into this world and teach us our first steps. Hands to hold and cradle and rock us to sleep. Hands to watch in wonder as we become a mirror image of those hands.

 

school hands.jpg

 

Helping hands to comfort and soothe our worries away on our first day of kindergarten. Hands to help guide us on the right path to adulthood. And when we make mistakes, those hands are there to lift us up…to help dust us off…and to push us to keep moving forward until we’ve reached our goals. Strong hands to mold and measure all those moments which make up a childhood.

 

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Then one day those hands wipe away the tears as they lovingly push us out of the nest and into a nest of our own. Helping hands to give us away to the ones who have come to love us. Hands who eagerly await the chance to reach out to our own next little hands and help welcome them into the world.

 

old hands.jpg

 

And somewhere along the way, the tides turn and the hands change hands. Now our hands are the ones reaching out to help. Our hands extend support and comfort as we try to repay all those years of memories of those loving hands. Hands that show the wrinkles of time have touched them but they still have the power to lift us up and guide us when we falter.

 

pray

 

And when the time comes…when those hands lay in eternal rest…our hands will wipe away the tears as we close our hands to pray. Prayers to bless those hands that lived and laughed and loved through the ages. And when all the tears are wiped away, we will take the hands of those we welcomed into the world and tell them of the day we met our own helping hands…

 

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Week One

 

***DON’T FORGET! It’s week one of THE TWELVE WEEKS OF LUNADAR giveaway and this week you get a chance to win the set of cool bookmarks shown below! Just click on the pile of presents to the right of this post and choose how you would like to enter the FREE giveaway. Winners will be announced every Monday, starting next week, in my INDIE AUTHOR’S JOURNEY post, so check it out and see if you’ve won!***

 
***ALSO…it’s not too late to tell all your educator or school librarian friends about their chance to pick up a FREE copy of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound during my LUNADAR Pay It Forward FREE giveaway! I’m giving away THOUSANDS of ebook copies between now and Friday, November 2nd, in exchange for an honest review on Amazon. All they have to do is send me a Facebook message or email with their valid email address and I will send them their FREE copy, along with a copy of the Lunadar map I sketched. Hurry and share the good news about this FREE ebook giveaway before time runs out!***

 

donna

 

International best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, LUNADAR: Homeward Bound (a YA fantasy), ebook edition, is now available from Amazon, with the print edition coming October 15, 2018.

 

FLASH FICTION TUESDAY: The Royal Treatment

 

throne.jpg

 

Now on Tuesdays…at least for the foreseeable future…welcome to Flash Fiction Tuesday. In case you don’t know what flash fiction is, it is an extremely short story (sometimes created in 100 words or less) with a beginning, middle, and an ending.

But in my case, I write flash fiction with an open ending. I allow my readers to draw their own conclusion as to what happens. This week’s story came to me two years before the idea of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound was even born, but now as I reread it, I can see a bit of Ariana in today’s main character…

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The morning sun slides in through the stained glass window, prisms of color shattering the musty quiet of the throne room. Gilded cloth surrounds the regal chair standing all by itself in the middle of the large room. In mere hours the destiny of a nation will be changed forever, but for now, it is as if the room holds its breath and waits for what is to come.

In the kitchens servants bustle around as they prepare dishes to be served in the Great Hall later that evening as the week’s celebrations begin. The woodsy aroma of roasted boar mingles with the more delicate smell of vegetables, soups, and sweetbreads. Extra tables and chairs are brought in to handle the visiting nobles. Everywhere the sounds of chatter can be heard as excitement rises over the upcoming coronation.

However, down the hall in the royal chambers, there is almost a tomb-like atmosphere as maids and ladies-in-waiting silently help the young girl to dress. She feels suffocated as layer upon layer is added to her royal gown. No one knows of her deepest fears. How she wants to run from this burden about to be placed upon her young shoulders. To stay hidden amongst the moors, never to return to the castle. How betrayed she felt when her father died in battle and left her to this fate.

Somewhere deep in the towers, the loud gonging of bells can be heard announcing it is time. Will she be able to do this? Can she make the sacrifice asked of her for her people and a kingdom ravaged by war? Taking a breath, she squares her shoulders and slowly makes her way towards the doors leading to her future…

***What happens next? Will a nation be saved by one young girl? Share your comments and endings to this story below!***

 

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Week One

 

***DON’T FORGET! It’s week one of THE TWELVE WEEKS OF LUNADAR giveaway and this week you get a chance to win the set of cool bookmarks shown below! Just click on the pile of presents to the right of this post and choose how you would like to enter the FREE giveaway. Winners will be announced every Monday, starting next week, in my INDIE AUTHOR’S JOURNEY post, so check it out and see if you’ve won!***

***ALSO…it’s not too late to tell all your educator or school librarian friends about their chance to pick up a FREE copy of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound during my LUNADAR Pay It Forward FREE giveaway! I’m giving away THOUSANDS of ebook copies between now and Friday, November 2nd, in exchange for an honest review on Amazon. All they have to do is send me a Facebook message or email with their valid email address and I will send them their FREE copy, along with a copy of the Lunadar map I sketched. Hurry and share the good news about this FREE ebook giveaway before time runs out!***

 

donna

 

International best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, LUNADAR: Homeward Bound (a YA fantasy), ebook edition, is now available from Amazon, with the print edition coming October 15, 2018.

 

 

AN INDIE AUTHOR’S JOURNEY: Who Likes FREEBIES?

free

 

I’m delving into the world of indie publishing. Some authors go the quicker route and use a source like CreateSpace or Kindle Direct to immediately get their books out there.

There’s nothing wrong going that route, but I’ve decided to take a different path.

 
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With just three weeks before the print release of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound, my FREE giveaways are really ramping up and YOU get all the goodies!

 

lunadar

 

I’m currently in the middle of my LUNADAR Pay It Forward giveaway. It’s open to all educators in the continental US serving middle through high school, as well as any school librarian who would like a FREE ebook copy of my young adult fantasy novel in exchange for leaving an honest Amazon review by Friday, November 2nd. Anyone leaving a review by the deadline will be entered into a FREE giveaway for a chance to win one of five autographed copies of my book and maybe even a FREE author visit to their school!

 

Week One

 

TODAY also starts my TWELVE WEEKS OF LUNADAR. Based on the Twelve Days of Christmas, each week there will be chances for anyone to win the weekly prize. Just click on the picture of the gifts to the right of this post and choose how you want to enter. The more ways you enter, the more chances to win one of the weekly prizes. By the twelfth week, just before Christmas, ALL entries from the previous weeks will be eligible for the GRAND PRIZE…twelve fantasy novels, including two autographed copies…one from me. and another from an author friend of mine.

 

book market.png

 

And for anyone in the area of Tanger Outlet in Sevierville, Tennessee on Saturday, October 27th, 2018, I will be participating in a TEN AUTHOR book signing event from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. at the Book Market Warehouse. They will be giving away a large basket of goodies, including autographed copies of books from the participating authors. I will also be giving away some swag goodies at my author table and will autograph any purchased copy of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound.

Be sure to enter as many giveaways as you can, and keep checking back for more goody giveaways as the holidays roll in, including a tentative book signing at Barnes & Nobles in December!

 

donna

 

International best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, LUNADAR: Homeward Bound (a YA fantasy), ebook edition, is now available from Amazon, with the print edition coming October 15, 2018.

 

 

FLASH FICTION TUESDAY: Come Back To Me

lighthouse-2372461_960_720

 

Now on Tuesdays…at least for the foreseeable future…welcome to Flash Fiction Tuesday. In case you don’t know what flash fiction is, it is an extremely short story (sometimes created in 100 words or less) with a beginning, middle, and an ending.

But in my case, I write flash fiction with an open ending. I allow my readers to draw their own conclusion as to what happens. This week it’s the call of the sea and a lover lost…

 

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They warned her about returning but she wouldn’t listen. She couldn’t. Her mind
knew the waiting had been too long. They said he was probably lost with his ship
and yet her heart refused to give up. For days she had waited, there by the shore,
searching the horizon for some speck of hope to float across the waves and return
her love to her.  But as weeks turned into months the silence began to engulf her.  
 
That’s when the dreams began.  At first just mist and moonlight and the hint of a
whispered voice calling out for her to come to him. A voice so soft and velvety as it
touched her, teasing her with a hunger to hold onto his arms once more until she
thought she would go mad with the longing. She could tell no one about those
dreams. They already thought her mad.  But she knew he was waiting there for her
and so she found her way back to the lighthouse. Back to the place where all their
dreams began and ended. Back to the place where in her dreams he told her to meet
him.
 
As she made her way up the long winding stairs in the moonlight she could make
out a shadow, there in the doorway and she knew he had finally come back for her.
They had told her to abandon all hope but her heart simply couldn’t let go. She had
long since given up knowing what was real and what was fantasy. All she could
think of after all these years was that her love had returned…

 

***Well? What do you think? Is this mystery phantom a lover returned or fantasy come to life? Do you think this would make a good short story? Comment below and let me know!***

 

***Don’f forget to let all your teacher and librarian friends know that I’m giving away THOUSANDS of copies of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound through my LUNADAR Pay It Forward Program, along with a chance to win some autographed copies and maybe a FREE author visit for their school! Have them email me at donasdays (dot) com (at) gmail for details!***

 

***Also, my TWELVE WEEKS OF LUNDAR prize giveaway starts on Monday, September 24th! Here’s the link with details if you missed it…https://storycatcherpublishing.com/2018/09/10/an-indie-authors-journey-the-twelve-weeks-of-lunadar-contest/***

 

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LUNADAR cover jpg

 

Ruler by day, a reluctant pirate by night, 18-year-old Princess Ariana fights for her subjects in the waterfall city of Lunadar. In a kingdom surrounded by fairies and mermaids, and ravaged by deadly Drundles, only a chosen few are trusted to guard her daughter, Candra, as the secret heir to the throne.

But it only takes one ill-fated meeting for Ariana to suddenly be plunged into an escalating web of secrets found in her father’s journal, a deadly kidnapping, and an ever-weakening resolve to turn her back on the call of the merman’s song.

With Ariana’s world falling apart and the future of Lunadar at stake, how will she bring her father’s murderer to justice and fulfill a deathbed promise to protect Lunadar’s legacy?

donna
International best selling, award winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, LUNADAR: Homeward Bound (a YA fantasy), ebook edition, is now available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books A Million, Goodreads, and other online retailers.

 

An Indie Author’s Journey: Paying It Forward

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I’m delving into the world of indie publishing. Some authors go the quicker route and use a source like CreateSpace or Kindle Direct to immediately get their books out there.

There’s nothing wrong going that route, but I’ve decided to take a different path.

 

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As the days count down to the print edition release of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound on Monday, October 15, 2018, I’m up to my eyeballs in marketing. I spend all of my free time trying to think of ways to promote my book.  On one of my other posts I talked about mailing out 142 postcards to school libraries, public libraries, as well as chain and indie bookstores. Of the 142 cards sent out, 17 were returned. Fifteen of those business have either moved with no forwarding address or have closed down for good. Two of the returned envelopes were due to errors on my part and can be resent shortly.

Now to the next phase.

I knew when I wrote Lunadar that the reality is I probably won’t make much money (if any) off this book.

I’m okay with that and here’s why.

I have a vision for this new publishing company I’ve created and these first few years will see me spending more money than I will receive in overall revenue. There is a strong mission behind Story Catcher Publishing and this current book is just the beginning.

With that in mind, this weekend I got to thinking about how else can I spread the word about my writing? If you missed it, last week’s post talked about my TWELVE DAYS OF LUNADAR starting next Monday. There will be weekly giveaways and lots of opportunities for everyone to start off the holidays a little early with a chance to win some cool prizes. Here’s the link telling you all about it:

https://storycatcherpublishing.com/2018/09/10/an-indie-authors-journey-the-twelve-weeks-of-lunadar-contest/

The next thing I’m doing is giving away hundreds…if not thousands…of copies of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound to any teacher or school librarian who asks for it.

IT’S THAT EASY!

As part of my LUNADAR Pay It Forward Program, any educator or school librarian who requests it can receive my book for FREE. All I ask is for them to share it with their students and for anyone reading my young adult fantasy novel, to leave a short, but honest review on Amazon when they are done. There will also be prizes.

WHAT? MORE FREEBIES?

Yep! When a teacher or school librarian requests a copy of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound, their school will go into a drawing to win an autographed copy of my novel as well as the possibility of receiving a FREE author visit from me as well!

There will be five winning schools. The deadline to leave a review and enter the drawing is Friday, November 2nd, 2018.

If you have any questions, just leave a comment on this post or send me an email to donasdays (at) gmail (dot) com.

Be sure and tell any of your friends who are educators or school librarians anywhere in the continental US about this chance to receive FREE copies of my young adult fantasy novel as well as their chance to win an autographed copy of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound for their school. 

Did I also mention there’s even some group discussion questions at the back of the book for literature classrooms and book clubs?

Can you help a poor gal out so I can pay some writerly love forward?

 

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lunadar

 

Ruler by day, a reluctant pirate by night, 18-year-old Princess Ariana fights for her subjects in the waterfall city of Lunadar. In a kingdom surrounded by fairies and mermaids, and ravaged by deadly Drundles, only a chosen few are trusted to guard her daughter, Candra, as the secret heir to the throne.

But it only takes one ill-fated meeting for Ariana to suddenly be plunged into an escalating web of secrets found in her father’s journal, a deadly kidnapping, and an ever-weakening resolve to turn her back on the call of the merman’s song.

With Ariana’s world falling apart and the future of Lunadar at stake, how will she bring her father’s murderer to justice and fulfill a deathbed promise to protect Lunadar’s legacy?

 

donna

 

International best selling, award winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, LUNADAR: Homeward Bound (a YA fantasy), ebook edition, is now available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books A Million, Goodreads, and other online retailers.

 

 

An Indie Author’s Journey: The Twelve Weeks of Lunadar Contest

I’m delving into the world of indie publishing. Some authors go the quicker route and use a source like CreateSpace or Kindle Direct to immediately get their books out there.

There’s nothing wrong going that route, but I’ve decided to take a different path.

 

****************

 

I love the fall. I’m allergic to the heat and sun, so the thought of cooler weather, cloudy days and falling leaves energizes my spirit like nothing else can.

Except maybe the upcoming birth of my latest book.

To celebrate the upcoming release of LUNADAR: Homeward Bound print edition on October 15, 2018, I’m throwing a twelve-week long celebration!

 

Wait! What?

 

That’s right! Just like the TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS song where someone receives a new gift every day for twelve days, I plan on showering twelve different fans with a token of my appreciation for being a part of my writerly world!

Beginning Monday, September 24th, there will be a different Rafflecopter contest each week to give away a weekly prize. All entries from each week will also be eligible for the grand prize on week twelve, which will run the week of December 10th so I can mail out the grand prize package in time for Christmas.

 

But, “What can I win?”, you may ask?

 

Well, here’s the run down of each weekly prize and the grand prize packet…

Week One

WEEK ONE…Three unique bookmarkers

Week Two 1        Week Two 2

WEEK TWO…Fairy House bird feeder

Week Three

WEEK THREE…”Dark Curse” by Christine Feehan audio book

Week Four

WEEK FOUR…$20 Wendy’s gift card

Week Five

WEEK FIVE…Moon and stars necklace

Week Six.jpg

WEEK SIX…”Kingdom’s Dawn” by Chuck Black audio book

Week Seven.jpg

WEEK SEVEN…Beach charms jewelry kit

Week Eight.jpg

WEEK EIGHT…Yankee Candle car air fragrance locket

Week Nine.jpg

WEEK NINE…Doggie book stand

Week Ten 2 (1).jpg    Week Ten 2 (2)

WEEK TEN…Beach tea light candle holder

Week Eleven 1.jpg    Week Eleven 2.jpg

WEEK ELEVEN…Barnes & Noble $10 gift card

Week Twelve.jpg

WEEK TWELVE GRAND PRIZE PACK…Twelve fantasy novels including “A Sending of Dragons” by Jane Yolen, “The Mapmaker Chronicles” by A L Tait, “Firewing” by Kenneth Oppel, “Wereworld: Nest of Serpents” by Curtis Jobling, “Warriors: Fire and Ice: by Erin Hunter, “The Murk” by Robert Lettrick, “Five Kingdoms: Rogue Knights” by Brandon Mull, “Fairest” by Gail Carson Levine, “What The Dickens” by Gregory Maguire, “Deep Blue” by Jennifer Donnelly, autographed copy of “At The Dawn of Legend: Guinevere Book Two” by Cheryl Carpinello, and an autographed copy of my book “LUNADAR: Homeward Bound”.

Why not help a poor gal out and tell all your friends about my upcoming free contest?

 

*******************

 

lunadar

 

Ruler by day, a reluctant pirate by night, 18-year-old Princess Ariana fights for her subjects in the waterfall city of Lunadar. In a kingdom surrounded by fairies and mermaids, and ravaged by deadly Drundles, only a chosen few are trusted to guard her daughter, Candra, as the secret heir to the throne.

But it only takes one ill-fated meeting for Ariana to suddenly be plunged into an escalating web of secrets found in her father’s journal, a deadly kidnapping, and an ever-weakening resolve to turn her back on the call of the merman’s song.

With Ariana’s world falling apart and the future of Lunadar at stake, how will she bring her father’s murderer to justice and fulfill a deathbed promise to protect Lunadar’s legacy?

 

donna

 

International best selling, award winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, LUNADAR: Homeward Bound (a YA fantasy), ebook edition, is now available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books A Million, Goodreads, and other online retailers.