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Sunday, May 15, 2011

Block Party Wrap Up

The Diversion Press Blog Tour Event has been great!  We do not have enough entries yet for our giveaways, but will leave the posts up for more comments through the end of May and will award prizes if we have the minimum number of entries at that time.  Thank you again to all involved!  We appreciate your participation and support.  Keep checking back on the blog for more information about Tony Iovino's Notary Public Enemy and After Dark, the horror and ghost anthology. 

People Poetry Contest Winners

After delicious meal and yummy dessert, it is time to announce some winners. People Poetry was not only a poetry collection, but also a poetry contest. We would like to say thank you to all of our poets.  Each poem was read carefully.  Although we liked two or even three poems from some poets, People Poetry only has one poem from a single poet.  This allows a wide variety of poets to be included. 

Several entries stood out and are our contest winners. Congratulations!

1st Place--Francis DiClemente for "St. Peter's Cemetary"
We love a surprise ending! 

2nd Place--Jeremy Hockett for "The Me I Never Was..."
What a great poem! 

3rd Place--Kirsten Crase for "Glue for a Broken Teacup" 
Who hasn't been broken? 

Honorable Mention--Viky Gilpin for "Everyone Said You Were Perfect"

Honorable Mention--Linda Loegel for "Las Vegas"     

Diversion Press is Excited to Announce People Poetry

People Poetry is the second poetry collection published by Diversion Press, following up on the success of the first anthology, Meanderings: A Collection of Poetic Verse. People Poetry includes over sixty poems by over sixty different poets. This collection is by People, for People, and sometimes about People. It's People Poetry!

People Poetry  $9.95 Now $7.00

Buy People Poetry and get any other book at 20% off!

To Order:

E-mail us at diversionpress@yahoo.com with your address and your order. We will send you an invoice by PayPay with the cost including shipping.

Welcome to the Diversion Press Block Party!

Today is the last day of the Diversion Press Blog Tour Event.  It has been great--full of ups and downs.  This past week, Blogger has been down, so no new posts could be added.  Certainly, this caused some problems for our blog tour.  However, we hosted most of our great authors and were very fortunate to have many great blog hosts that featured our books and authors. 

Throughout the day we will be recapping our blog tour and answering all those pressing questions that you might have!  Many of our authors will be here too!  So, have a burning question ask away and fire up that BBQ!  What's your favorite food to eat or drink to drink at a block party?

Friday, May 13, 2011

Interview with Robert Bresloff, Author of Wanderland

What inspired you to write Wanderland?
I had read an article about Gavin Menzies' book, 1421 The Year China Discovered The World in, I believe it was U.S. Today Magazine. In the article, the writer explored Menzies' theory that the Chinese may have discovered America in 1421. The article was so well written that I ran right out and bought the book. Whether the Chinese really discovered the New World or not doesn’t really matter, but Gavin Menzies’ data proved quite thought provoking. What if the Chinese did discover the New World seventy years before Columbus—what a great story it would make. So, I set to work on Wanderland, using the data from Mr. Menzies' research to create a story based on possible events combing fictional and real historical figures.

What is the setting for the book?
In 1421 the Ming Dynasty ruled the vast empire of China. Unknown to many, the Ming Dynasty possessed an immense fleet of ships that traveled to and traded with most of the known world at the time. To build these ships they needed lumber, and lots of it, even to the point of invading neighboring countries to obtain this needed treasure. The book starts in what we now know as Viet Nam, China, what is now India into the Atlantic and ends in the Blue Caribbean Sea.

Who are the main characters of the book?
The two main fictional characters are the ship’s wizards, Master Waan and his thirteen year old apprentice Chen, who is the main protagonist. Ship’s wizards are different than what you would think of when you think of a wizard. Unlike, say, Harry Potter, Chen carries no wand or speaks incantations. Ship’s wizards are more cerebral. Their minds can interpret any civilized language and can feel the presence of an enemy from far away. They possess an uncanny intuition, but as their powers grow, as in the case of the much older Master Waan interesting spells can be cast.

Can you tell us something about them?
Chen is an orphan saved from certain death by Master Waan. The boy has no idea why Master Waan was there just in time to save him and absolutely no idea that he was destined to become a wizard. Master Waan was the last of the ship’s wizards and a great favorite of the Ming Dynasty’s greatest Admiral and supreme commander Zheng He.

What challenges do you think face young adult authors?
Coming up with stories and characters that engage boys to read. Most boys are reluctant readers. Thanks to Harry Potter and The Chronicles of Narnia and others, boys have started to read again. One of the most common compliments that I receive is from teachers and librarians thanking me for concentrating on that segment of the market. Now, that being said, I always include a character in my books for the girls to enjoy as well. As a matter of fact, my biggest fan is a ten year old young lady. Another obstacle is the competition from self published authors. Many writers think writing for kids is easier than writing regular fiction and they self publish. I’m not saying that there is anything wrong with self publishing, but it does change the landscape for trade publisher authors. Libraries and bookstores are inundated with requests for book signings from self published authors leaving the contacts unreceptive to any author’s approach.

What advice can you give to aspiring writers?
First, of course, keep writing. No matter how bad you think the first draft is, it’s okay, the first draft should be bad. The importantly thing is to get you creative ideas down before you forget them. You know, while the juices are still flowing. Then once you’ve finished your fifth draft, start on your sixth. Don’t submit until you are perfectly happy with your final draft. Then once you start submitting, don’t give up. Just because your work is rejected doesn’t mean it’s bad, you may not have hit the publisher that is the right fit for your manuscript. I believe Diversion Press was my 35th submission on Wanderland. I never gave up!

What is the best part of being a published author?
Besides Wanderland I have work with another publisher. Between the two books, I am having a ball. I have done some book signings, TV and newspaper interviews and school appearances. I love taking questions from the kids, that’s the most fun. Kids say the darndest things. Last week I was at a middle school and the first question was “Are you rich?” I’m looking forward to a very busy second half of 2011.

What question would you like to leave up for our readers to answer?
If you wrote a book, what would you write about?

BLOGGER was down

Hi Readers,

We are sorry to report to you that blogger was down for the past couple of days.  Thus, our blog tour was interrupted.  We will be updating the blog today.

Thank you for reading and commenting on our tour.

Don't forget that we want to give away free books, all you have to do is comment on and Follow the blog.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Diversion Press Robert Bresloff, author of Wanderland

When the army of the new emperor of the Ming Dynasty, Zhu Di had invaded neighboring Annam, Chen, a thirteen year old boy was saved by a mysterious old man as the invading Chinese destroyed his village and killed his family. The old man turned out to be, Master Waan, a Ship's Wizard in the service of the great Chinese admiral Zheng He. Master Waan was on his way to meet the admiral's fleet that was to set sail upon his arrival. Though Chen thought the old man odd, he knew that his only chance for survival-to accompany Master Waan to China. As the wizard's apprentice, Chen sailed with the fleet, a gigantic armada made up of great Chinese Treasure Ships in search of what Chen believed to be magical place referred to only as Wanderland. He soon learned that it was no coincidence Master Waan had appeared at the village just in time to save his life. It was Chen's destiny to find Wanderland.

Review snippets: 

"The author of this novel does a wonderful job of enhancing the reader's imagination which appears to be missing in so many books of today."  John Beeson

"The author's attention to detail, use of appropriate nautical and navigational vocabulary, language of the period, Chinese names and historical references, and masterful choice of Chinese quotes at the beginning of each chapter all combine to allow us to participate in the action and outcomes of this exciting story."  Nancy W. Cook

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Diversion Press Welcomes Siobhan Nichols, Author of The Darling Rebels

We ask Siobhan, our youngest author, about The Darling Rebels and being an author and college student.  Read her interview below.

How has being an author affected your college life?

It's made me cooler to other students and more respected by teachers. I've been blindingly average my whole life, but being an author in my early twenties has definitely given me an edge.

Are you often asked for advice on writing and publishing?
I do get that a lot, yes. People I don't know will message me on Facebook, asking about the publishing process. I also get asked for my "writer's input" a lot.

What advice can you give aspiring authors?
Don't give up. Treat it like it's your job. Put your heart and soul into it. Have lots of different age groups critique it before you send it out.

How did you choose your setting for your book?
It seemed like the only place where something like the story could happen.

Who are the main characters?
Charlotte Abrams, Jack Camden, Adam Miller, and Lucy Richardson

Can you tell us about them?
They are seventeen-year-old best friends, who simultaneously save and destroy each other. Charlotte is a Southern belle with an untamable wild streak and a huge heart. Jack is a runaway who is as terrified of his love for Charlotte as he is of his past. Adam is a white knight and a troublemaker; he's also the catalyst for most of the emotional drama that the characters go through. Finally, Lucy is the 'everyman's girl'; most people relate to her insecurity from her best friend and boyfriend.

What inspired their creation?
You'd have to ask them. They just appeared in my head one day and now they won't leave. They don't even pay rent.

Are you working on anything new?
No, I think one book was enough.

I'm kidding. Last night, I was working on a book about a girl who learns to fly. But I change my mind all the time about what I want the next book I release to be.

Have you attended any signings or speaking engagements for your book? Can you tell us about them?
I spoke to a group of aspiring writers at my local library about the writing and publication process. And I was so incredibly nervous because I didn't want to disappoint them or give them bad information. Luckily, there was another, more-experienced author there, so that helped out a lot.

What are the best and worst things about being an author?
The best is getting to create worlds and have things go your way in them. Getting to live vicariously through your characters. The worst is the crippling self-doubt and the eating habits that form from that stress.

What question would you like to leave up for our readers to respond?
Should I or should I not go for my Masters in Creative Writing? Explain.

Happy Mother's Day

Don't Forget that today is Mother's Day.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Diversion Press Welcomes Irena Praitis, author of One Woman's Life

Diversion Press is pleased to present One Woman's Life--
the remarkalbe story about Ona Kartanas

Ona Kartanas has lived through extraordinary circumstances. Born in Lithuania during World War I she was orphaned at an early age and struggled to find her way in life. She experienced the Soviet and Nazi occupations of Lithuania during World War II, was interrogated at gunpoint on more than one occasion, lived in displaced persons camps in Germany after the war, and immigrated to Colombia, South America. Eventually she and her family immigrated to the United States. This book offers a series of prose vignettes that chronicle her story of loss, war, displacement, poverty, and struggle. Ona's life highlights the strength of the human spirit and the human capacity to not only survive, but to triumph.


One Woman’s Life is a remarkable story about your grandmother. How did you collect the information for this book?

I'd heard stories about my grandmother my whole life. After a trip to Lithuania in 1994, where my grandmother told even more about her life, I felt strongly that someone needed to collect her stories. In 2004 I sat down with her to interview her about her life. My grandmother, my mother, my father and I all sat around my grandmother's kitchen table. I asked a question, my grandmother responded in Lithuanian, my mother translated my grandmother's response into English, I typed my mom's translation into my laptop, and my father filmed the interviews. In 2008, I finally had a sense of how I wanted to write out the information I'd received during the interviews. That's when I started transforming the transcripts into the book.

What was your grandmother’s reaction to the book?
She loves it! As I was working on it, I sent her the first twenty pages and asked her opinion. She responded with an "it looks great, don't worry about anything, just keep going" answer. So I kept writing. She told me that while she read the book even more of her memories came back to her.

What is your favorite story in One Woman’s Life?
Wow, it's hard to say. I like the story of my grandmother's endurance after my grandfather left forSwitzerland in the middle of the war, and I also really like the story of my grandmother chasing the man off the farm in Colombia. I admire her strength of will at those moments.

Is there a message to be learned from this book?
Love is an essential element of survival. Power and action are admired, but it's really love that keeps a person and a family going through difficulty.

What other things are you writing? Is history a departure from your normal writing area?
I've never written a book like this before, so yes, this book was a departure for me. Mostly, I write poetry. I have a book of translated poems (translated from Lithuanian into English) set for publication later this year. The poet is a Lithuanian writer, Sonata Paliulyte, who currently resides in Vilnius. The book is co-translated with Kerry Shawn Keys. I also have drafted a book of poems about the Lithuania of my grandmother's childhood.

What question or comment would you like to leave up for blog readers?
I very much like your question from above: Is there a message you learned from this book? I'm curious to hear what readers take away from the book when they've read it.



Friday, May 6, 2011

Diversion Press Welcomes Pamela Laskin, Author of DP's Newest Book--Visitation Rites

Diversion Press is Pleased to Announce the Newest Edition to the DP Catalog--Visitation Rites by Pamela Laskin!

Visitation Rites is a contemporary coming of age story. Pati must live with a mother who suffers from mental illness. When her father leaves her mother and marries again, Pati is given a second chance at a normal life, including a new stepmother, new home, and even new friends. One thing stands in the way of Pati's perfect new world, the visitation rites of her biological mother. Each week Pati must meet her mother, even if it means lying to her new friend Jayne. Pati will soon learn that Jayne is more like her than she ever imagined.


Congratulations on the release of your book. You do a great job on the character development in Visitation Rites. Can you comment on how you developed the characters and give any advice to those who are working on character development?

Character is where one must begin (after the writer has established a motivation). Since I teach creative writing, too, I always tell my students characters are multi-dimensional, so it should not just be what they think and how they feel, but what does the character wear; what is inside his or her refrigerator; closet ; what does this character do in his or her spare time; most importantly, though, how does this character interact with other characters? Is there a difference between what's inside and the outside "charade?"

You tackle serious issues in Visitation Rites. Do you think that children today deal with more serious issues or is it just that people are more aware of these issues?
There have always been serious issues in children's lives, but the culture and the times demanded "silencing" some of these issues. For example, Judy Blume, as a children's author, tackled serious issues such as divorce; death; addiction; mental illness, and these issues were tackled decades ago, but her books were banned at one time. These days publishers are much more willing to accept the fact that children have very complex lives, and that they want to read about their lives and their issues. Adolescent readers do not want to read about fluff.

What inspired you to write about mental disease and what research did you do to understand what the patient and their families are enduring?
Mental illness has always been a popular topic in my writing, since I have a mother who is mentally ill. My first published picture book, A WISH UPON A STAR, was about the awful feelings a young girl hoarded inside of her because of her mentally ill mother. Writing children's literature has helped me to exorcise my demons.

I have done some research on the topic as well, but more of what is in the book, VISITATION RITES, is drawn from personal experience. I understand the pain that children in these families confront daily.

What do you want readers to take away from this book?
I want readers to feel that just because there are issues within their family(and it may be a different issue: a down's syndrome sibling, for example), that they need not feel that they have to keep it such a secret. I hope my readers will feel the possibility of opening up their deep and dark closet to a good friend, and to understand how important it is not to bury feelings and also to build a bridge of trust.

One of our other authors, Kathleen Bullock (Far Corners) was a former student of yours. It must have been exciting to see that she is using what she learned in your class.
I am so excited that Kathleen's book has been published. She was an outstanding student in my children's writing class, but what is so exciting for me is that I always encourage students to submit their work and try to get published, and Kathleen has actually done this with great success.

Tell us about your teaching job and also your work at the writing center?
I no longer work at the Writing Center at City College, but as a full time lecturer, I teach three classes a semester, and generally half of them are creative writing classes. My fall classes always include undergraduate and graduate children's writing. I am bowled-over to see how many young people are interested in the genre and how much talent there is out there. In addition, I am the Director of The Poetry Outreach Center at The City College, one of the largest outreach centers in the Northeast. I mentor graduate students to go out to public schools, many in under-served communities, and teach poetry. This culminates in the NYC Poetry Festival, which is May 17th, and ultimately the young poets will have their work published in POETRY IN PERFORMANCE. This year's featured guest poet in Cornelius Eady.

Are you working on anything new?
I am working on a picture book series for ages 4-8, where potatoes are the main character. It begins with an alphabet book, POTATO PICNIC. This has been completed, there are five books in the series and I am currently looking for a publisher. I am also working on an anthology of essays about women and shoes, where I am one of the editors: IT'S ALL ABOUT SHOES: a multi-cultural collection of women's reflections on the shoes they wear. Finally, I am writing poetry, since I always write poetry, and I love to do this.

Do you have a question or comment that you would like to leave for blog readers?
My comment for blog writers is PERSEVERE as writers. Seven years ago a poetry collection of mine was published, which had been completed twenty years previously. I never give up on a project I believe in. Never give up on your passion; this is my final comment. Publication is great; it is the final reward. But it is all about the writing, first and foremost; you must enjoy the process.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Diversion Press Welcomes Tom Piantanida, author of In the Shadow of the Big Apple

We caught up with Tom Piantanida, author of In the Shadow of the Big Apple to talk about his book.  Tom is semi-retired, working as a consultant to medical instrument companies in northern California. Many of his stories involve his alter ego, Kenny, who grew up in an Italian ghetto across the river from NYC, where the local pool was known as Mussolini's Bathtub and its turbid water instantly turned all bathing suits the color of Italian battleships. During his career in biomedical research, Dr. Piantanida wrote numerous technical articles and book chapters; only after early retirement did he concentrate on writing fiction. Since then, Dr. Piantanida received Honorable Mention in 2005 from the Writer's Digest for his short stories and has recently been published in The First Line, Today's Feature, Skive Magazine, Silver Thoughts, Demon Minds, and The Front Porch. During his six year tenure as Editor of the Racing Drivers' Club Newsletter, he published a monthly column, in addition to submitting stories under the Spoonerismic pseudonym, A. Mack Barker. When he is not tinkering with custom and special-interest cars, he is building model trains, or pursuing motorsports.The main character in your book is Kenny.  How did you develop the Kenny character? 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.




What is the setting for In the Shadow of the Big Apple?
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.

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

Who are the other important characters in Kenny's life?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.

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.

Will there be more Kenny stories?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.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Diversion Press Welcomes Jennifer Caloyeras, Author of Urban Falcon

Join us to chat with Jennifer Caloyeras about her young adult book, Urban Falcon

This is not how it was supposed be. Evan was all set to finish his high school years at Elbow Creek High, pursuing his passion for photography in the small town where he grew up. But mid-junior year, his Dad's job forced the family to move to Lincoln Heights, a booming metropolis - a city one could get lost in. Now his best friend Denny won't even talk to him and something suspicious is going on with his Mom. When Evan's worst fears are confirmed, he starts acting out in ways he never thought possible. Caught between who he used to be and the possibility of who he could become, he's thrown into a world of dating, out of control parties and family drama. Evan Falcon learns more about himself than he ever though possible.

What advice can you give aspiring YA writers?

Read. Read. Read. Know what’s out there. Don’t try to imitate it, but find your own voice within it so you’re actually joining the YA genre conversation in some way.

In the time since your book was first released, do you see a change in the trend of the YA field? If so, what is your opinion of it?
I’ve attended a lot of book conferences, festivals and fairs over the past year and a half (since the release of my book) and I have seen a couple of shifts, it seems, in the industry.

Fantasy fiction has been big over the past few years with Twilight and then the Hunger Games to name two of the most successful book series. But I think the pendulum is swinging back the other way now, away from fantasy and towards more realistic portrayals of teens. (An agent at a recent conference specifically said, “If it has a vampire in it, I won’t even look at it!”)

Also, I think there’s a real push to regain some boy readership back, which means a push for excellent boy-oriented fiction.

It’s an exciting time to be writing YA! I think it used to be thought of as this inferior genre and now it’s looked at as an equal to “adult” fiction. In fact, much of the audience for young adult fiction seems to be adults who want to look back, in a safe way, at what it’s like to be a teen again.

Would you consider Evan Falcon to be your average teen? What makes him similar to other teens and what makes him unique?
I guess Evan is “average” in the sense that he’s full of insecurities and has this slightly rebellious side. He’s on that eternal teenage quest to “find” himself and part of that journey is trying on different selves – the rebel, the lover, the silent sufferer. He negotiates these different sides of himself throughout the book. I’d like to think of him as a sensitive male teen, which I think might make him more unique than other, more stereotypical portrayals of teenage boys in realistic fiction. He sometimes over-thinks / over-analyzes his situation. I also think that deep down he’s a good kid. He doesn’t have any glaring social or emotional problems, but even the best kids sometimes find themselves in trouble.

What inspired you to develop the Urban Falcon characters? Are the characters based on people that you know or are the completely fictional or a mix?
This is definitely a piece of fiction! (I’d hate for anyone who knows me to try and read themselves into the text) – that being said, everyone I’ve ever met kind of enters this storage space in my writing vocabulary that I can pull quirks/traits from. I spent a long time developing the characters in the book – listening them and getting to know them so that they would translate as three-dimensional on the page.

What is the best and worst part of being a published author?
The best part is the idea that people are reading my work! That’s just so thrilling – equally thrilling – even a year and a half later! I don’t know that there is a worst part – maybe the pressure that comes with a second manuscript? Writing without a publication past is very liberating – there’s no standard to measure myself against, but now I’ve raised the bar for myself and I want to be able to make each proceeding work that much stronger.

Are you working on any new projects?
I tend to write multiple things at once. I think I do this because I am prone to restlessness. I have a completed manuscript of adult short fiction (Which, consequently was part of my graduate thesis for my MFA in creative writing which I completed in the spring of 2010.) I have recently finished a draft of a second young adult novel and I am writing my first non-fiction book proposal that involves cooking – one of my favorite hobbies!

Do you have any book signing stories that you would like to share?
The signings have all been a great experience and a wonderful way to connect with my audience! I used to be a singer / songwriter in my 20’s and I would get so nervous before I took the stage to sing and play – it makes getting up there and reading a passage from my novel seem easy – I don’t have to worry about wrong notes or forgetting my lyrics!! I was especially proud to be invited to speak at California State University, Los Angeles where I received my MA in English literature in 2004. It was a thrill to lead a discussion about young adult fiction in a room full of my English professors and current creative writing students.

What outlets have you found to be the most or least helpful in marketing your book? What suggestions do you have for other authors to help with marketing their books?
I think the Internet it the most amazing tool for marketing. It’s been a learning curve – but I feel as though I’ve learned so much. There are tons of bloggers willing and eager to read and review your book, conduct interviews, enter a discussion about writing and reading. The literary world online is full of energy and forward momentum. It’s such a phenomenal way to connect.

I also learned that there are many exciting writing contests for published (and unpublished) writers. Urban Falcon was recently a runner up in the Hollywood Book Festival in 2010!

Outlets like Facebook and Twitter certainly help to get the word out. I think people especially love to learn more about the person behind the book. I think that in the past, writers were a bit more of a mystery…only coming out once a book was finished and ready to be promoted. But now, writers can connect with their audience during the creative process.

I had these glossy postcards made for the book when it was published. I always carry them in my purse with me. I like to leave them at various locations, especially when I travel….hotel bathrooms, restaurant tables, gas stations. You never know who might pick them up and check the book out!

QUESTION FOR BLOGGERS:
Who were you in high school? Who were you perceived to be versus who you felt you were?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

People Poetry

People Poetry is the second poetry collection published by Diversion Press, following up on the success of the first anthology, Meanderings: A Collection of Poetic Verse.

People Poetry includes over sixty poems by over sixty different poets. You will find writing by the beginner poet as well as the seasoned writer. I bet you won't be able to tell which is which! This collection is by People, for People, and sometimes about People. It's People Poetry!

ISBN: 978-1-935290-19-3
Pages 88
$9.95

Stay tuned to our blog to find out more about this poetry collection, who won, how you can get a copy, and how you can get a poem in our next collection.

BLOG TOUR Update, Directory, and Free Books

This is just a reminder that the Diversion Press Blog Tour is going strong.
You can visit our homepage http://www.diversionpress.com/ to download the full calendar with links. You can visit http://diversionpress.blogspot.com/p/blog-tour-directory.html%20for for links to all the previous stops. We have many more stops still coming to the DP Blog and the blogs of those hosting our authors.

Please stop by and FOLLOW our blog and do leave a comment.  Our authors have been responding to comments left by readers.

Also, we are giving away copies of most of the books and one big giveaway, but you must leave comments and be a Follower of the blog to win.  Details on the giveaways are here http://diversionpress.blogspot.com/p/blog-tour-giveaways.html

We hope to see you on the blog!

Sincerely,

The Diversion Press Team

Recent storms

The last days have seen severe weather hit Tennessee and the surrounding areas. Locally there have been thunder storms, repeated tornado watches and warnings, and flood warnings. Recently there have been lots of school closings, thousands of power outages, houses that have been damaged or destroyed, and loss of life. With the high volume of rain now there is concern of flash floods and that the Cumberland River will overflow. Just last year this river overflowed causing cities along its banks to become flooded and the famous scenes of Nashville being underwater.


Our thoughts and prayers are with those who have lost property and loved ones.