Friday, October 30, 2015

Weekly Roundup: October 30, 2015


Welcome again to the Oak Tree Press Weekly Roundup! It's almost Halloween, so why not get into a festive spirit by reading some suspenseful stories? We have a great selection of paranormal tales and mysteries to raise your hair and get your spine tingling.

Today's Roundup features a few of these titles, but please check out our bookstore for a complete list. Our award-winning authors are sure to have something that will grab your interest on this fall holiday -- all the way through to year's end.

Thank you for stopping by our blog for the roundup this week. Here as always, for your reading pleasure, we have the week's news, book signings, events, reviews, blogs, and more from our authors to share with you. 


~~~~~

"I know that books seem like the ultimate thing that's made by one person, but that's not true. Every reading of a book is a collaboration between the reader and the writer, who are making the story up together."

~John Green, author

~~~~~ 


A reminder from Jeana: All OTP books are on Manic Readers!

Need help choosing a great book to read?
Check out our sample chapters on

We have plenty to choose from. Just click on a title and you will be directed to a free read! These sample chapters will be updated frequently, and new releases will also be featured. 

~~~~~
 
AWARDS AND RECOGNITION

Ronald Wendling’s memoir, Unsuitable Treasure: An Ex-Jesuit Makes Peace with the Past, received three notices that mean a great deal to him personally. The first was in the newsletter published by the Historical Society of St. Boniface and the Maryhill Community. Ronald is a great-great grandson of Joseph Wendling from Alsace, who was among the founding settlers of the village of Maryhill (then New Germany) in Ontario, Canada.

The second notice appeared in Think, the alumni magazine of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, where he received his doctorate in 1970, and the third was in the newsletter of the university's Department of English, the academic discipline in which he earned that degree.

In the memoir, Ronald recounts how his choices were influenced by his father's addiction. Ronald attended a Jesuit high school in Buffalo, New York, at the same time his father was recovering from alcoholism. But Ronald’s mother, unable to forgive her husband for his past mistreatment of her, fostered in her son a need to make up to her for his father’s sins and so delays the separation from her necessary to his growing up.

He entered the Jesuit order at seventeen, his father died of cancer shortly afterward, and nine lonely years later he left the Jesuits having discovered under their tutelage that he was not one of them. His marriage, his children, his career teaching literature, and the writing of this memoir all taught him mercy, especially to his body, and helped him bridge the gap between his appreciation of the Jesuits and the necessity he felt to leave them behind.



REVIEWS & INTERVIEWS


Cindy Ladage, author of My Name is Huber (with Jane Aumann), Fairy Tales Are Fragile, and When Matilda Made Time Stand Still, was featured on Dawn's Reading Nook on October 24. The topic of the post was the importance of finishing a manuscript and why a first draft must be finished before the next steps in the publication process can start.

"I think we underestimate the importance, the success of finishing a writing project.  To finish a novel or children’s book is a huge accomplishment.  Every writer’s hope is that their creation will find print, but that is the next step, the first is to take the story, compose it and complete it," Cindy says. She also talks about her writing process in her most recent work, the children's picture book When Matilda Made Time Stand Still.

You can read the complete commentary here.

In the children's book, Matilda wants to continue to play when her mother tries to get her to take a nap. Matilda inadvertently breaks her mother's watch and time stands still. The little girl is happy to continue with her tea party and playing with her dolls until she herself becomes sleepy and worries that she doesn't know how to get time to start again.

Cindy blogs about her travels at Traveling Adventures of a Farm Girl. Her Prairie Land Buzz story, "Outdoors in Southern Illinois" was a finalist in Destination Travel, Domestic Newspaper category of the North American Travel Journalist Association's 2014 NATJA Awards Competition.


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Lorna Collins's main character from Ghost Writer, Nan Burton, and the book's ghost, Max Murdoch, were interviewed on Library of Erana on October 28. This one-of-a-kind interview gives a description of the story's plot from the main character's point of view, and learn about the character in her own words. The ghost makes an appearance, too, and his corrections and additions to Nan's answers during the interview provide a taste of the relationship that develops between these characters in the novel.

You can read the complete interview here.

In Ghost Writer, unemployed computer programmer Nan Burton inherits a California beach cottage from her great-aunt. She’s delighted, but she’s in for a huge surprise: The house is haunted by the ghost of famous romance writer Max Murdoch (pen name Maxine DuBois), who insists that Nan complete his last novel, threatening to keep her from sleeping until she agrees. The ensuing clash pits youth against the long-dead but still egotistical author with humorous and moving results.




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Marilyn Meredith (aka F.M. Meredith) was featured at the Writers in Residence blog on October 30. The topic of the post was ghost and spirits and how she has incorporated them into her books.

Several of the books in her Tempe Crabtree mystery series feature Native American legend and mysticism, and Violent Departures, the most recent book in her Rocky Bluff PD mystery series, features a ghost.

"I’ve had many eerie experiences over the years, but no ghost sightings. I have lots of fun writing about what I think it might be like," she says. You can read the full interview here.

In Violent Departures, College student Veronica Randall, disappears from her car in her own driveway, everyone in the Rocky Bluff P.D. is looking for her. Detective Milligan and family move into a house that may be haunted. Officer Butler is assigned to train a new hire and faces several major challenges. 
 






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Helen Osterman was interviewed for an upcoming piece in the Homer Horizon, her neighborhood's newspaper. The journalist specifically asked her about her new book, Rogue Wave, and the Emma Winberry cozy mystery series.

Rogue Wave is the latest in the Emma Winberry series. In the novel, Emma Winberry and Nate Sandler, her significant other, plan a vacation on a sailboat on the Caribbean. Emma has misgivings about the trip and discusses it with her guardian angel who tells her there will be trials ahead. At the beginning of the sail, the ocean is calm and they relax.

While sailing from the island of CuraƧao to Bonaire, they see a small uninhabited island with a lone palm tree. Emma notices a flashing light, as if someone is sending an SOS. They have no idea that Estrella Montoya, wife of a Venezuelan drug lord, is being held captive there. When returning to CuraƧao, they encounter a violent storm. Nate is washed overboard by a rogue wave. Is he lost forever? How does Emma get involved with the drug lord and his family? Follow the characters through the world of storms at sea, piracy, drug lords, and heroism to the pulse-pounding conclusion.

You can read more about Helen's mysteries series and other writing projects at her website.


UPCOMING


Mary Montague Sikes will be teaching the last of two "Painting with Texture and Design" workshops on 30, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Bay School Community Arts Center, 279 Main Street, Mathews, Virginia.

The Bay School Community Arts Center was founded in 1997 by Wendy Wells, who was was passionate about her vision to have a community arts center in Mathews, a small rural town on the Middle Peninsula in eastern Virginia. The facility has
three classrooms, one of which is a pottery studio. Classes are also scheduled offsite at local artist studios to give students access to special equipment such as weaving looms and furnaces for glass blowing and welding.

More than 30 talented local artists conduct over 100 classes in fine art and crafts.

In addition to painting, Mary has published both fiction and nonfiction books with OTP. Her latest novel is Evening of the Dragonfly.
 

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Virgil Alexander will be signing copies of his novels The Baleful Owl and Saints and Sinners at the Red Mountain branch of the Mesa Public Library in Mesa, Arizona, on October 31 from 1 to 3 p.m.

The library is located at 635 N. Power Road.

The Baleful Owl was recently published by OTP, and Saints and Sinners was a second-place winner in the Public Safety Writers Association 2014 Writing Competition. Virgil is also the author of The Wham Curse.

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Nicholas Checker has been invited to the 2nd Annual Authors' Day event at the Slater Memorial Museum in Norwich, Connecticut, on October 31 from 1 to 4 p.m. The event is a public celebration of talented Norwich and Connecticut writers and is sponsored by Friends of Slater Museum and Otis Library. Nicholas will be signing his novels Druids and Scratch.

Halloween is also the one-year anniversary of the publication of Druids!

Druids is a medieval fantasy adventure of an isolated lad born with an eerie sense that earns him the suspicion and contempt of those who fail to see it as a gift. He joins two renowned knights -- both caught up in a terse gender rivalry -- while on a perilous quest to liberate a ruined land from a druid-lord’s deranged sorcery.

Rippling through a saga as tense as a nerve-wracking game of chess is the mysterious Cryptic Sense possessed by those destined to become druids. A blend of ancient beliefs like animism and the early science of alchemy -- and draped in the Native American spiritualism of Manitou -- the Cryptic Sense of this tale explores the tight bond between druids and nature.



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Beryl Reichenberg, OTP children's book author and artist, will be on presenting a paper craft and bookmaking class for children at Studios on the Park in Paso Robles, California, on October 30. The children will be learning how to make a spooky bat book.

She'll also be teaching a three-session children's class on paper craft and bookmaking at the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art. The first class will take place on Tuesdays, beginning on November 3, from 3 to 4:30 p.m.

Beryl explains that "the first session will feature accordion books. I'll bring several examples from Burma, China, and the United States. We'll start with the basic accordion form and then try a couple of variations including a flag book and if time permits, a daisy chain book. The Museum is one of my sales venues and this is my way of thanking them as well as promoting my books."

Copies of two of Beryl's recent books, Lost in a Dark Forest and Meerkats Face Danger have been ordered by the Morro Bay Museum of Natural History in Morro Bay and Whiz Kids Toy Store in San Luis Obispo, California.



Beryl has published six children's books with OTP: Ants on a Log, Butterfly Girls, Camouflage, Clowning Around, When Caterpillars Dream, and The Mysterious Case of the Missing Birthday Cake


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Ann Howley will be at the Upper Saint Clair Library in Upper St. Clair, Pennsylvania, to give a presentation on book promotion on Monday, November 2, at 7 p.m.

Ann is the author of Confessions of a Do-Gooder Gone Bad, a wry, humorous coming-of-age memoir about a well-intentioned "problem child" raised by conservative, evangelical Christian parents in Southern California during the sixties and seventies.

As she naively stumbles through her youth and young adulthood, one misadventure after another, she also struggles to reconcile her ultra-Christian upbringing with women's liberation, prejudice, protest and poverty during this turbulent era, eventually gaining a different perspective of faith in a world more complicated, terrifying, funny, and wonderful than she expected.





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Richard Paolinelli will be at Campbell Con on November 7, in Campbell, California. The event is being held at the Campbell Community Center. The event is billed as a one-day pop culture convention that is fun for all ages and celebrates comic books, movies, fantasy and sci-fi, superheroes, collectibles, and more. Richard will be promoting his recent release Reservations and his other sci-fi work.

Reservations takes place in a land deeply seeded in beliefs and legends, where someone is eliminating the leaders of the Navajo Nation disguised as the trickster Coyote. Whoever it is has the Navajo President squarely in his sights, and everyone else “seeing things.”

As the body count rises, the FBI sends in their best man, Special Agent Jack Del Rio, to put an end to the killings -- a white man who is not trusted nor wanted. A decorated hero for thwarting a terrorist attack in London, Del Rio finds himself in a completely different world among the three Reservations -- Navajo, Hopi, and Zuni -- located in the Four Corners of the American Southwest.

When the past and the present collide, only one leader shall remain.





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Ken Oxman will be will be giving a talk about his novel, The Reluctant Assassin, at the New Canaan Historical Society in New Cannaan, Connecticut, on November 11.

The story follows U.S. Navy Lieutenant Nathan Blake. He’s a government hit man, one of the best . . . and he wants out. It’s December 1941 and America is at war. Blake wants to fight the war as a sea-going officer, but he is much too good at killing up close, and his covert navy department will do what is necessary to keep him busy.

He’s deceived into eliminating both a lascivious Nazi general in North Africa who has gotten hold of information damaging to the Allies and a top German double agent in Singapore who wants to expose the Allies' Far East spy network.

While in Singapore, Blake searches for Abby Sinclair, the girl he fell in love with in London and who is now in the country on a clandestine mission with her boss. They are all caught up in the Singapore’s humiliating defeat by a merciless Japanese army. Their escape gives Blake a chance to finally go sailor over assassin – and lands them in the greatest danger of all.


RECENT

Susan Sagarra signed copies of her mystery Cracks in the Cobblestone and gave out some Halloween treats on October 25, at The Book House in St. Louis, Missouri.

Set in a fictional town modeled after the historic main street of St. Charles, Missouri, Cracks in the Cobblestone follows two women who are taking a crack at adulthood in vastly different worlds. Their mutual obsession with the Titanic tragedy brings them together to solve a long-forgotten mystery in the quirky river town of Tirtmansic. 

Amelia Thornton is a feisty 25-year-old owner of a school for young ladies that is sinking in debt. A grieving detective comes to town to investigate when Amelia’s money -- and husband -- disappear. But the detective’s plans go awry. Later, an odd presence reveals itself to cub reporter Meghan Murphy as she walks on the town’s rickety, brick-laden street. Could the spirits inhabiting the cobblestone street and both women’s favorite haunt lead them to the long-buried secret of what happened. 


ADVANCE NOTICE

Additional details about these events will appear in future Roundups.

Thonie Hevron's Intent to Hold, the second book in the Nick and Meredith mystery series, has been selected for the Copperfield's/Redwood Writers Fiction Book Club (now known as the Sonoma Author Spotlight). 

Redwood Writers authors submitted their books to be selected for six coveted event slots beginning in January 2016 and running through June. The events are Q & A sessions as well as book signings. Writers commit to doing PR work in addition to publicity for Copperfield's, which will stock these books for purchase.



BLOG CORRAL

Lorna Collins is blogging about a recent trip she and her husband Larry took to Hawaii. She writes about the places she went and the attractions on the island of Maui in two posts.

"We spent the first five days in Maui with our good friend, Suzi O. She and Larry attended high school together, and I was a couple of years behind them. We have been in touch for many years, and she often makes our house her headquarters when she visits So. Cal. She has been after us to stay with her for several years. This time, it worked out perfectly."

You can read about why this visit was so memorable by following these links: part 1 and part 2.


READERS & WRITERS RESPOND

Ronald Wendling received a 5-star Amazon review (September 13, 2015) for his memoir, Unsuitable Treasure: An Ex-Jesuit Makes Peace with the Past, from a former student. In response, Ron writes: 

"Teachers love to hear about the unknown impact they have had on a student’s life. . . . What I found so rewarding about the review was the connection it established between the inner lives of the literary figures I once covered in my literature courses and my own confusions and sufferings as I recorded them in the memoir I wrote after retiring from full time teaching.

"We all endure loss and hurt as we go through the world, and I was delighted to discover that my teaching and my writing together have helped a person I knew some thirty years ago accept that pain and the joys that go with it."

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That wraps up the Roundup for this week! We hope you enjoyed our news.

We look forward to your emails! If you have a news item you'd like to submit to the Weekly Roundup, please send the details to Nancy at weeklyroundup.items@gmail.com. Photos and your personal commentary about events, expectations, and outcomes are encouraged!

Big or small, old or new, your news helps us keep our blog updated and showcases the great books and talented authors we're so proud to have published. Comments, questions, and suggestions are welcome too. Please do drop us a line!


  Oak Tree Press Facebook! Like us on Facebook! And click on the icons below to share the Weekly Roundup on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, Twitter, and other social media sites!


Billie Johnson, Publisher

Friday, October 23, 2015

Weekly Roundup: October 23, 2015


Welcome again to the Oak Tree Press Weekly Roundup! If you talk to a reader long enough, your conversation will probably come around to that friendly but spirited debate about which book format is better: e-books or print books. This debate isn't just one of hobby readers either. Publishers and authors alike take an avid interest in the trends and preferences of their customers and fans.

The rise of the e-book market shook up the publishing industry, with many in publishing and book sales fearing that a "digital apocalypse" was near at hand. But like any consumer trend, the sales of books in this format have changed over time. This year, e-book sales have reportedly dropped by 10%, which has given a breath of life to independent book sellers and spurred traditional publishers to expand their infrastructure for print book distribution. The intricate push and pull of blockbuster titles, consumer spending, the economy, and the pricing of books on Amazon are the devils in the details of the e-book versus print story. Print is not dead, but is its battle with e-books over? Perhaps we're still waiting to see.

Fortunately, when it comes to Oak Tree Press books, you don't have to choose a side. We have wonderful titles in our bookstore, and they're available in print and electronic formats. You can read in the format you prefer and gift a great book to readers among your friends and family in the formats they each like best as well. Our award-winning authors allow us to offer many options for ending the search for your next good read or book club selection!

Thank you for stopping by our blog for the roundup this week. Here as always, for your reading pleasure, we have the week's news, book signings, events, reviews, blogs, and more from our authors to share with you. 


~~~~~

"'A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies,' said Jojen. "The man who never reads lives only one.'"

~George R.R. Martin, A Dance with Dragons

~~~~~ 


A reminder from Jeana: All OTP books are on Manic Readers!

Need help choosing a great book to read?
Check out our sample chapters on

We have plenty to choose from. Just click on a title and you will be directed to a free read! These sample chapters will be updated frequently, and new releases will also be featured. 

~~~~~
 
AWARDS AND RECOGNITION

Dac Crossley was the runner-up in the Kings River Life magazine Halloween mystery short story writing contest. His story, "Goody, Goody," will be featured in an upcoming edition of the online magazine. We'll post a link when it's available!

Dac is the author of three OTP books: Code of the Texas Ranger, Guns of the Texas Ranger, and Revenge of the Texas Ranger. You can read more about Dac and his work at his website.


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Award-winning author Ilene Schneider's short story "Peanut Butter and Glitter" is featured on page 13 of the the October/November issue of Suspense Magazine. Ilene describes it as a black humor revenge fantasy that originally began as a personal project to cheer up a friend.

She reflects that her short stories are very different from her novels: "They do still have humor. Just much darker. I think I'm drawing on my childhood love of Hitchcock on TV."

You can read the story here (p. 13 of the PDF).

Ilene is the author of the OTP titles Chanukah Guilt and Unleavened Dead, which are part of the Rabbi Aviva Cohen mystery series.

Ilene's flash fiction story "Perfect" and short story "Miami Snow" were winners in the Flash Fiction, Published and Fiction Short Story, Published categories, respectively, at the Public Safety Writers Association 2014 Writing Competition.




  

REVIEWS & INTERVIEWS

Nancy LiPetri was interviewed for the Reade and Write blog. The interview went live on October 20—which marks the one-year anniversary of the publication of her novel, The Wooded Path. In celebration of the anniversary, Nancy reveals several facts readers may not already know about her first novel, her writing, and her current work-in-progress.

You can read the complete review here.

Ever wonder if you’re normal? Laine McClelland sure does. When the mysterious disappearance of a Bunco friend, Paula, shakes Laine's Lake Norman neighborhood, her seemingly perfect world is suddenly filled with dark thoughts, dangerous temptations, and surprising confessions. What is normal once you realize life’s short anyway? Was her marriage ever enough? She finds herself risking it all . . . and afraid of what really happened to Paula. 





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C. Ed Traylor was featured in an October 17 interview on Rick Davis's weekly WSMI AM 1540 radio show "Around Macoupin County." On the show, Ed talks about the evolution of his debut novel, The Crossing, from a kernel of a plot idea to the finished manuscript. He also talks about his journey from first-time novels to award-winning writer.

Ed reports that the interview went very well, and he has received positive comments from many radio listeners. You can hear the full interview here.

The Crossing tells the story of Racheed Ul-Bashar, a Pakistani whose grandfather and sister are killed in an American drone strike in Pakistan. Driven by revenge, Racheed develops a minutely detailed plot, a synchronized strike on three American cities on the anniversary of the September 11 attacks. He contacts Juan Rodrequs, a violent, ruthless drug cartel leader in Juarez, Mexico, who agrees -- for a price -- to help by moving terrorists and supplies across the border.

All goes well until Diego Garcia, a trusted ally and confidant of the cartel leader, is stopped in Illinois for a speeding violation while transporting 400 kilograms of cocaine. Facing significant prison time, Garcia becomes an informant for the FBI Terrorism Task Force to save himself. But unbeknownst to him, the other terrorists, or the task force, Racheed and his partner decide to enter the U.S. at a different location, forcing the FBI Task Force to scramble. Will they be able to eliminate the threat to some of America’s largest cities and most cherished attractions?

The Crossing won second place in the Public Safety Writers Association 2015 Writing Competition.


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UPCOMING

Channing Whitaker, will be be attending the Wizard World Comic Con event in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on October 23-25, where he’ll be selling and signing copies of his novel Until the Sun Rises: One Night in Drake Mansion. The event is being held at the Cox Business Center

Wizard World Comic Con events celebrate graphic novels, comic books, movies, TV shows, gaming, technology, toys, and social networking and often feature celebrities from movies and TV, artists and writers, and events such as premiers, gaming tournaments, panels, and costume contests.

Channing's author page for the event is here.


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Beryl Reichenberg, OTP children's book author and artist, will be at the Santa Maria Valley Discovery Museum in Santa Maria, California, on Saturday, October 24, from 3 to 4 p.m. to present a paper craft and bookmaking class for children, showing them how to make a spooky bat book.

Beryl reports that "the kids at the botanical gardens two weeks ago enjoyed making this book because they could hang it up to decorate for Halloween. We used Halloween stamps for the first time; they were messy but fun. I plan on bringing the stamps for the other two events along with some wipes to clean little hands."

She'll be teaching the class again at Studios on the Park in Paso Robles, California, on October 30.

Beryl is also giving away a copy of her children's book Hopping to the Moon to a lucky newsletter reader during the month of October. You can find out how to sign up here.

Beryl has published six children's books with OTP: Ants on a Log, Butterfly Girls, Camouflage, Clowning Around, When Caterpillars Dream, and The Mysterious Case of the Missing Birthday Cake


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Ann Howley begins teaching the second of her four-week intensive memoir-writing courses at the Community College of Allegheny County main campus in Pittsburgh on Wednesday, October 28, and will return to the wonderful Upper Saint Clair Library in Upper St. Clair, Pennsylvania, to give a presentation on book promotion Monday, November 2 at 7 p.m.

Ann is the author of Confessions of a Do-Gooder Gone Bad, a wry, humorous coming-of-age memoir about a well-intentioned "problem child" raised by conservative, evangelical Christian parents in Southern California during the sixties and seventies.

As she naively stumbles through her youth and young adulthood, one misadventure after another, she also struggles to reconcile her ultra-Christian upbringing with women's liberation, prejudice, protest and poverty during this turbulent era, eventually gaining a different perspective of faith in a world more complicated, terrifying, funny, and wonderful than she expected. 






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Mary Montague Sikes will be teaching "Painting with Texture and Design" workshops on October 29 and 30, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Bay School Community Arts Center, 279 Main Street, Mathews, Virginia.

The Bay School Community Arts Center was founded in 1997 by Wendy Wells, who was was passionate about her vision to have a community arts center in Mathews, a small rural town on the Middle Peninsula in eastern Virginia. The facility has
three classrooms, one of which is a pottery studio. Classes are also scheduled offsite at local artist studios to give students access to special equipment such as weaving looms and furnaces for glass blowing and welding.

More than 30 talented local artists conduct over 100 classes in fine art and crafts.

In addition to painting, Mary has published both fiction and nonfiction books with OTP. Her latest novel is Evening of the Dragonfly.
 

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Virgil Alexander will be signing copies of his novels The Baleful Owl and Saints and Sinners at the Red Mountain branch of the Mesa Public Library in Mesa, Arizona, on October 31 from 1 to 3 p.m.

The library is located at 635 N. Power Road.

The Baleful Owl was recently published by OTP, and Saints and Sinners was a second-place winner in the Public Safety Writers Association 2014 Writing Competition. Virgil is also the author of The Wham Curse.


RECENT

JL Greger signed copies of her medical mystery thrillers, including her most recent novel Malignancy, at the New Mexico Library Association annual conference, which was held from October 21 to October 23 at the Albuquerque Marriot Pyramid North in Albuquerque.

On October 23, she spoke at the conference, giving a presentation titled "Science in Your Fiction." The conference scheduled described the presentation as follows:

"Science, particularly biology, has been included in fiction for generations. Consider Faust, Frankenstein, The Fly, Coma, and Jurassic Park. Originally science was presented as a sinister force in fiction, but increasingly the image of scientists has become more positive. Now the difference between reality and fiction changes with each new scientific breakthrough.

"Look at modern fiction in a new way from the viewpoint of a scientist. Then you’ll be able to answer these questions: Could a Jurassic Park exist? Can scientists make invisibility cloaks? Could mutant viruses (developed naturally or in the lab) decimate human populations? Consider this new way to evaluate novels authenticity of science. Then the novels you purchase for your library will educate as sell as entertain readers."





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Ann Howley was honored to present a workshop called "Research: No Skimping Allowed" on October 22, at The Authors Zone Writing Conference at the Rivers Club in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Ann reports that the conference "was fantastic, and what an honor it was to be one of the presenters. In the evening, the keynote speaker was Lee Gutkind, founder of Creative Nonfiction magazine and it was a thrill to meet him."

Ann is pictured here with Mr. Gutkind.

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Nicholas Checker had an "exceptional day" at his October 17 Bank Square Books event that combined Alley Cat Allies' National Feral Cat Day and his novel, Scratch. Nicholas reports that a captivated audience "embraced the notion of extending greater compassion toward stray and feral animals in need of human friendship -- as well as the message expressed in my novel that 'animals are not disposable items.'"

The presentation featured a short animation clip of Scratch created by the talented Bill Burke! Nicholas thanks store managers Elissa and John for their exceptional efforts in helping make this event so successful. Nicholas also had the pleasure of seeing many friends in the audience: former gymnast Katy Leigh (Getman) and writing students Robert Duerr, Trudy, and Shari L. Rosenthal. Larry Hirsch, a solid supporter of neglected animals and Alley Cat Allies was also present.

Nicholas thanks Becky Robinson of Alley Cat Allies for accepting the event as a part of the National Feral Cat Day campaign. He's proud to predict that more cats will benefit from this day!


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The Oak Tree Books booth at the Visalia Taste the Arts festival was a success. Publisher Billie Johnson says "I always enjoy events, especially when shared with Marilyn Meredith!

"It was a fun day. Booths lined both sides of the street for three blocks in downtown Visalia. Our neighbor to the north set up a gallery of paintings and photographs, as did one across the street. Another across the way booth exhibited beautiful wooden items -- bowls and cutting boards and trays. Still another displayed hand made jewelry -- necklaces and earrings.

"In the festival tent (where one pays so that individual exhibitors don't have to handle payments and sales tax) there were many large pieces of metal sculpture. Also spotted on my shopping strolls were more jewelry, crocheted shopping bags, more framed art -- so many unique items. I treated myself to a couple of necklaces!"

Plan now to attend next year. OTP is planning to have a booth again, and we'd love to see you!






 






ADVANCE NOTICE

Additional details about these events will appear in future Roundups.

David Freedland has been invited to participate in the annual Men of Mystery conference November 14, at the Irvine Marriott Hotel in Irvine, California. David will be promoting his novel Lincoln 9 and will make a one-minute presentation on his mystery book to conference attendees.

The photo above was taken at the Lincoln 9 book launch. Al Murray, mayor of Tustin, California (Hawaiian shirt), and Jeff Wortheimer, general counsel for the Orange County Superior Court appear with David.

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That wraps up the Roundup for this week! We hope you enjoyed our news.

We look forward to your emails! If you have a news item you'd like to submit to the Weekly Roundup, please send the details to Nancy at weeklyroundup.items@gmail.com. Photos and your personal commentary about events, expectations, and outcomes are encouraged!

Big or small, old or new, your news helps us keep our blog updated and showcases the great books and talented authors we're so proud to have published. Comments, questions, and suggestions are welcome too. Please do drop us a line!


  Oak Tree Press Facebook! Like us on Facebook! And click on the icons below to share the Weekly Roundup on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, Twitter, and other social media sites!


Billie Johnson, Publisher