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Friday, October 30, 2009

Blog Contests

Blog Membership Contest #1
The member of our blog, who successfully enrolls the most newmembers (10 minimum) by November 27 will win our new “Bag of Books” a Diversion Press tote with three Diversion Press books. This could make a wonderful holiday gift for someone or several people. The Diversion Press “Bag of Books” will also be available for purchase on our website in the coming weeks and will be shipped in time for the holiday season. All of our author’s books are available for this offer.

Here are the rules (the fine print):*You must be a member of the blog to be eligible.*Contestants must submit an email between November 27 and December 1 listing all the people that you recruited. All new members that you list must still be members.*The winner will be announced after December 1 and the prize will be guaranteed to arrive in time for the holiday.*We will post the results and each person’s total at the end of the contest.*We may also post the results during the contest so that you can see what the competition is up to.*The blog must reach a total of 50 members for the contest to be valid.





Blog Membership Contest #2

This is open to all members of our blog. One member will berandomly chosen on or after December 1 to receive a DiversionPress “Bag of Books”, a Diversion Press tote with three DiversionPress books. These can be veteran or new blog members.NOTE: Each person can only win once!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Introducing In the Shadow of the Big Apple



Introducing In the Shadow of the Big Apple by Tom Piantanida

In the Shadow of the Big Apple
By: Tom Piantanida

In the Shadow of the Big Apple is a story about Kenny, a mischievous boy growing up in an Italian neighborhood in 1950s New Jersey. Summers in the sweltering tenements, where sewer-gas laden breezes carried with them a reminder of the proximity to Caputo’s Fish Market, Giuliano’s Deli, and the car barns, drive Kenny to seek escape by finagling himself into a stalag-like summer camp, complete with swarming bats in the dorm, a snapping turtle in the zero-visibility swimming pool, reports of quicksand to keep hikers on the trail, and burned-out counselors. Using his “private entrance,” Kenny spends afternoons at Palisades Amusement Park where he gets even for all those years in Catechism Class by swamping a boatload of nuns on the motorboat ride. On one of their many trips to The Big Apple, Kenny and his not-quite-juvenile-delinquent cousins sneak into a movie theater in New York City, only to find that it’s a 3D movie that requires special glasses. The cousins fare no better during the family’s zero-income summer vacation on the Jersey Shore, when they “borrow” a boat, only to find that it is porous, and despite the fact that the vessel is sinking, the irate owner forces them to push it across a stagnant lagoon.

Symbolically, Kenny never quite grabs the brass ring on the local carousel, but he nonetheless enjoys the challenge of learning to whisk four rings from the chute at a single swipe.
Readers will be amazed at the amount of trouble young Kenny can manage to get into as he learns important life lessons. Older readers will be able to relate many of the stories to times of their own youth. Author Tom Piantanida breathes this era to life as only one who lived in New Jersey at that time could.

In the Shadow of the Big Apple by Tom Piantanida
Diversion Press: Young Adult, fiction
$12.95, Paperback, 170 pages
ISBN: 978-1-935290-05-6, Distributed by Ingram and returnable
Publication Date: October 1, 2009
Click here to purchase.

Introducing the Darling Rebels by Siobhan Nichols

Introducing the Darling Rebels by Siobhan Nichols

When Charlotte returns to her hometown of Asebrook from boarding school, she knows what she can expect from her days--lessons from tutors, criticism from her mother, and listening to the same gossip from the same people. But there seems to be something different in store for Charlotte when she meets Adam and Jack, the two boys who will change her forever. However, when Jack and Charlotte fall in love, they realize the fight that they are going to have to put up if they want to be together. During a time when money, society, and how one is viewed as everything, Charlotte stops at nothing to be with the boy that she knows she loves. Even so, Jack seems unwilling to sacrifice her future and happiness since he knows he has nothing to offer. The Darling Rebels tells the story of bravery and resilience in the face of insurmountable odds and how far one girl will go for love, even if it means leaving her seemingly perfect life behind.
About the Author:
She began work on her first novel at age 13 and finally found enough time and dramatic ideas to complete it. Even though she's still a teenager, she works as a movie critic, book reviewer, trend follower, music enthusiast, and avid sleeper. She would rather not disclose what she actually does for money, but it includes visors and French Fries.

The Darling Rebels, By: Siobhan Nichols
Diversion Press, Young Adult
$12.95, Paper, 260 pages
ISBN: 978-1-935290-06-3 1-935290-06-1
Distributed by Ingram and returnable
Publication Date: October 1, 2009
You can purchase a copy by clicking the cover or just click here.

Introducing Ellabug by Gregory Turner-Rahman

Diversion Press announces its first Children's Book: Ellabug by Gregory Turner-Rahman

Ellabug is a simple story about non-traditional families that follows Ella, a small but strongly willed young ladybug, as she begins to question her identity. Raised in a family made up of different animals, Ellabug desires ‘normality’ and uniformity which she finds in a family of ants whom she meets in the garden. Ella decides to escape the craziness in her own home by joining the ants. They, however, have a very different life and Ella is surprised when they work endlessly. Ella fears she has lost her parents forever and she quickly grows to appreciate her quirky family. Just when all seems lost, Ella’s parents call to her and they are reunited. All ends happily. Ella has learned that each family is unique in their own way.
Just click on the cover to purchase a copy.
See the fantastic website here
and then see the incredible Youtube video here
and finally purchase your copy here

Ellabug
By: Gregory Rahman-Turner
Diversion Press: Young Adult, fiction
Distributed by Ingram and returnable
$12.95
ISBN: 978-1-935290-09-4
Paperback, 40 pages
Publication Date: October 1, 2009

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Interview with Tom Piantanida about In the Shadow of the Big Apple

This week we asked Tom Piantanida, author of the newly released book In the Shadow of the Big Apple, a few questions about his book.

Hi Tom,


Your book In the Shadow of the Big Apple was just released. The main character is Kenny. Can you tell us where the inspiration for Kenny came from?

Kenny is an amalgamation of kids I knew while growing up in Union City, NJ. Of course, some of the adventures are autobiographical with literary license. That is, the stories have a kernel of truth, but were embellished to provide more interest. If you think of Kenny as my alter ego, you would not be far wrong.

The book is called In the Shadow of the Big Apple, can you tell us where the book is actually set and what are some of the locations Kenny ends up visiting?

Kenny's home base is 28th Street, Union City, NJ, and most of the local action takes place on that street and the two closest cross streets - Bergenline Avenue and Central venue. Bergenline Avenue is the most interesting street in the stories because it is lined by the car barns, Caputo's Fish Market, Vincent Giuliani's Italian Grocery Store, and Reguzzi's Produce Stand.

Columbia Park, where Kenny and two friends were apprehended for setting a fire was a defunct amusement park that Kenny's dad and others of his generation passed some time decades earlier. The park was actually beyond Kenny's territorial limit, being across Hudson County Boulevard, which was one of the main thoroughfares in Union City.

Palisades Amusement Park was actually in the town of Palisades Park, NJ. It was poised on the edge of the New Jersey palisades, overlooking Manhattan. The huge PALISADES AMUSEMENT PARK was clearly visible from the West Side of Manhattan. I only recently learned that the management of the amusement park knew all about the private entrance the Kenny and other kids used, and they had told their security force to turn a blind eye to kids sneaking into the park.

The Highlands is a real town on the "Jersey Shore." In fact, the movie Jersey Girl with Ben Affleck, George Carlin, and Liv Tyler was set there. After a few summer vacations - always the last two weeks in August - at Keensburg (another Jersey Shore town), my family settled into a pattern of renting from Captain Brown in the Highlands. The family would stay either in the Big House or The Boat House, but always at Captain Brown's. When the excitement of a carousel waned as Kenny got older, the family vacationed in Seaside Beach, NJ where there was a boardwalk and a huge amusement park.

What can I say about 42nd Street in Manhattan that hasn't already been said? In Kenny's time, the street was lined by movie theater that showed first-run films and businesses that sold a wide variety of inexpensive items, particularly binoculars, pocket radios, and switchblade knives. These business perennially displayed "Going Out Of Business" signs. Sandwiched between the businesses and the theaters were Grant's, where you could buy a great hotdog, and Hubert's Museum that featured a flea circus, among more exotic fare. The museum was at the rear of a penny arcade, and had a downstairs where the actual fleas circus and other acts could be found.

McDougall's Camp is based on a real camp that I attended near Sparta, NJ. And, as the story suggests, an "association" of which my parents were members, sponsored the trip. The camp was about as decrepit as described in the story, right down to the chlorine and gypsum-laden pool. And, incidentally, while I was at camp, my family did move out of Union City. I found them, though.

There are several distinct stories in the book, which one is your favorite?

I think my favorite story is about the Highlands, because there are so many fond memories of summers spent there.

What is it about that story that you like?

I am particularly pleased that an illustration from the Highlands graces the rear cover of the book. It is the only photo I have of Uncle Ben, who was my grandmother's "boarder" (a polite term used in the early 20th Century for a cohabitant of the opposite gender), and who I loved as the grandfather I never had. My fondest memory of the Highlands is chronicled in the story. It was not until many years later that I learned that because my dad had been laid off at work, the only way we could afford a vacation was if we lived off the sea, which we certainly did that year.

Can you tell us about one or two of the characters that Kenny interacts with?

Two of Kenny's closest friends were his two male cousins, one six months younger and the other a year younger than Kenny. The three cousins were a physical contrast. Kenny was of average build, if small; the next younger cousin, Max, (AKA Crisco, because he was "fat in the can") was taller than Kenny whether he was standing up or lying down; and the youngest cousin was rail thin and was called JJ Candybody by his father because he seemingly survived on candy, refusing to eat whatever his mother prepared. The cousins were very attuned to each other, so if one started a prank, the others joined in immediately.

Are you planning any appearances or signings to promote your book?

I am, indeed, planning some book signings, although it will be a bit more difficult now that I have moved out of the San Francisco Bay Area. My original plan involved signings at a multiple book stores in and around SF, and I fully expect to contact many of them to arrange for signings. However, having moved to the boonies 150 miles north of San Francisco, my signings may be somewhat curtailed.

If you had to convince someone to pick up a copy in two sentences, what would you say?

Wow!! Two sentences to convince someone to buy my book. Could one of them mention my cousin Guido, the Enforcer? No, I guess not. I don't know whether comparison is permitted, but if so, I like to compare my writing to that of Jean Shepherd, who wrote such books as WANDA HICKEY'S NIGHT OF GOLDEN MEMORIES (and other Disasters), and IN GOD WE TRUST, ALL OTHERS PAY CASH. Jean, who was my inspiration, had a zany talk show on WOR in NYC in the early 60's. He also morphed many of his stories into a film that has become a classic: A CHRISTMAS STORY.

Okay, try this: Experience what was like to grow up in an Italian ghetto in the mid-fifties with street-wise friends destined to dichotomize into cops and criminals.

Is this the last we will see of Kenny?

You have not heard the last of Kenny. In fact, I have self-published two other books about Kenny. KENNY'S KEMPS is a collection of short stories about Kenny's adventures as an older adolescent. Most of the stories involve cars and girls, which were the two intertwined themes in Kenny's life. DAVIES LAKE EPISODES is a novel that expands the cars-and-girls theme, while documenting adventures and misadventures at a summer resort where Kenny worked, and in Kenny's high school. Both were published by Lulu.com, and are available on Amazon.com.

Thanks Tom, we enjoyed reading about Kenny and we wish you and the book much success.

In the Shadow of the Big Apple, by Tom Piantanida. $12.95, 170 pages, Diversion Press Young Adult, paperback
ISBN-13: 978-1935290056


To purchase a copy, click on the cover picture above or just click here.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

FREE BOOKS---A CONTEST FOR FREE BOOKS--

The heading should say TWO Contests for Free Books!!!

Blog Membership Contest #1
The member of our blog, who successfully enrolls the most new
members (10 minimum) by November 27 will win our new “Bag
of Books” a Diversion Press tote with three Diversion Press
books. This could make a wonderful holiday gift for someone or
several people.

The Diversion Press “Bag of Books” will also be available for
purchase on our website in the coming weeks and will be shipped
in time for the holiday season. All of our author’s books are
available for this offer.

Here are the rules (the fine print):
*You must be a member of the blog to be eligible.
*Contestants must submit an email between November 27 and December 1
listing all the people that you recruited. All new members that you list must
still be members.
*The winner will be announced after December 1 and the prize will be
guaranteed to arrive in time for the holiday.
*We will post the results and each person’s total at the end of the contest.
*We may also post the results during the contest so that you can see what the
competition is up to.
*The blog must reach a total of 50 members for the contest to be valid.

Blog Membership Contest #2
This is open to all members of our blog. One member will be
randomly chosen on or after December 1 to receive a Diversion
Press “Bag of Books”, a Diversion Press tote with three Diversion
Press books. These can be veteran or new blog members.

NOTE: Each person can only win once!

We're Not In Kansas Anymore

Dear Readers, Authors, and Friends,

We are reposting some information about one of our new anthologies. We are still accepting poetry and stories for this anthology. Please read the information below and contact Darla Crist, the editor of this work, at museflash@aol.com for more information or to submit.

We're Not in Kansas Anymore:
This anthology will collect well-crafted poetry, fiction, flash fiction, and creative nonfiction in responses to the cultural phenomenon of The Wizard of Oz. Topics of interest include—but are not limited to—the idea of place and/or displacement, identity, disguises, memory, transformation, and objects of desire or disappointment. Please send your imaginative and previously unpublished submissions (1-3 poems, up to 6,000 words fiction or creative nonfiction, maximum 3 flash pieces up to 1,000 words each) with a cover letter, an active email address, and brief biography to museflash@aol.com or to Oz Anthology, c/o Darla Crist, Editor, Indiana State University, Department of English, Terre Haute, Indiana 47809.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Halloween Survey and a chance to win books and get discounts


Click the Link below to take our Halloween Survey.

You will also have a chance to win free books and get coupons just for taking part.
More details are available on the giveaways when you follow the link.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Interview with Jennifer Caloyeras, author of Urban Falcon

Recently we asked one of our newly published authors, Jennifer Caloyeras, a few questions about her book Urban Falcon, publishing, and being an author.

Jennifer, This is your first book, tell us what it feels like being a published author?


It feels wonderful! It’s a strange thing being a writer. You spend so much of your time sitting alone and writing. It’s such a private experience and then when the book comes out it shifts to this very public experience. But it’s nice to know that now people are finally able to read my work! (aside from family members).



What motivational advice would you give to aspiring writers?


Stick with the task of writing. Do one thing each day towards your goal. It could be something large, like writing a rough draft of an entire chapter or something as small as completing a sliver of research you may need in your book. I’d also advise aspiring writers to become avid readers of the genre they are writing in. Be sure you write a story that no one else can tell as well as you.


Tell us something about Evan Falcon?


I think I would have definitely had a crush on Evan in high school. He’s funny, artistic and sensitive and has just the right amount of insecurity, which makes him endearing. At his core, he cares deeply about the people he loves.



You really seem to be able to relate to these characters, they come alive, how were you able to do this?


I love the teenage voice, not just writing about it, but also reading it. I think the teen years are such a time of flux and self-reflection. All problems, even little problems are so amplified when you’re a teenager. I remember so vividly being at a point in my own life where I was so caught between being a kid and being a grown up. The key to creating a successful teen voice is to really tap into the characters. I feel as though I handed over the novel to these characters I created and let them lead the way.


You are actively promoting and signing the book. Where are your upcoming promotional plans and where might someone be able to pick up a signed copy?


Well, the last time I checked the Amazon.com website, there’s a used, signed book for sale! I have been busy promoting the book in California. I will be speaking at various high schools throughout the fall and I was just invited to be the guest speaker at a book club. I am currently adding dates and reviews to my novel’s website: http://www.urbanfalconnovel.com/


What would you tell someone who has not read the book, something that would inspire them to pick up a copy?


If you’re an adult looking to relive some of the teen angst you lived through (all within the safety of the pages of a book) this book is for you! I think that young adult readers will feel as though they’re not alone in their experiences of feeling as though the world is out to get them and no one understands them.


Jennifer, we think your book is great and can’t say enough about it, do you have any closing comments?


Happy reading, everyone! Thanks for interviewing me!


Thank you Jennifer.



Jennifer recently signed books at Skylight Books and at
the Orange County Children’s Book Festival. You can catch her this coming weekend (October 9-11--check for exact date and time) at Children’s Book World in West Los Angeles . She suggests that you "Come on by!"

You can order a copy of Urban Falcon by clicking here.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

New Titles for the Fall

Diversion Press is very, very busy. We have just released several new wonderful books. If you are looking for gifts this holiday season or just something great to read pick up a copy of one of our new books. Most of them are young adult books geared towards teenage readers, Ellabug is a children's book, but all of them can be enjoyed by adults and a wide audience (we [the editors] loved them!!!).

We are planning on doing interviews with each of these authors, so stay tuned to the blog and keep an eye on our website for updates.

Click on the covers to order a copy, a color catalog is available via Email by request.
BOOKSTORES CONSIDER HOSTING A SIGNING WITH OUR AUTHORS. You can contact them directly via our website or contact us at diversionpress@yahoo.com