Saturday, 6 September 2014

I am so pleased to be joining the blogging from the heart tour.

 What exactly is involved in this blogging from the heart tour do you ask?
Basically you answer 4 questions about yourself, and introduce  some other authors and bloggers! 
Simple right? I know blogging can be daunting for some, but if you think of it as an open diary, you might get the first picture of how to blog. Just write like a diary, or write whatever you like. What is it you are interested in, or what are you doing now as an activity, be it art, writing, reading, gardening, cat spotting, book collecting. It could be something new you are about to venture into for the first time. Just 'blog' it as if you are telling a story.
Here is where you get to meet other blogging from the heart sponsors and bloggers. Fellow Author and kid literature admin Cat Michaels asked if I would find any possible time to step aboard for the heart tour ride, and as I was already riding high, I thought why not. 
So I grabbed her hand and off we flew over to her website and blog. 
I have known Cat properly since she came aboard the kid literature whirlwind (she might be regretting it). I thoroughly enjoy reading Cat’s blogs and her heart tour blog and try to keep up with her on social networks.
 After earning an M.S. degree in special education Cat spent two decades helping students from kindergarten to college reach their potential. She also managed communications and staff development programs for an international high-tech company. She then returned to her education roots, serving at a community college as a writing coach for students with Asperger’s syndrome and learning disabilities. She writes illustrated chapter books for young readers and the young at heart. Cat's books are so adorable, Sweet T and the North Wind and Finding Fuzzy: a You-Decide Tale of a Lost Friend, can be found on Amazon and ordered from local bookstores. Check on her Amazon link To connect with Cat and learn more about her books, please visit her website and you can follow Cat on her social media sites.
Meet fellow creatives author, dear friend and admin to kid literature Carmela Dutra
Carmela is  a writer and illustrator of children's literature, as well as a photographer. Carmela loves children’s literature! Mostly because as she says she is a giant kid at heart. Nothing is more magical than when you’re a child being transported to a new world where you can explore and discover unknown things.  My stories focus on the bonds of friendship and triumph over evil. Carmela on goodreads

Then meet fellow partner in crime and Kid Literature, Steve Conoboy.
Steve went off to university to study ancient history and archaeology. Hat and whip not received. Complaints about this are ignored. University mostly a waste of time, apart from hours spent writing apocalyptic horror-comedy on 386 PC. It's great. Apocalyptic horror-comedy sent out to literary agents. None are interested. Novel not great. Mostly a waste of time. A long period filled with much writing and many submissions and plenty of rejection letters. Decide I can't stand prologues as they're never much use. Short stories accepted by Polluto, Voluted Tales and Kzine. Prompts a vigorous interest in Kindle Direct Publishing. First release is Macadamian Pliers, YA horror with an emphasis on creepy, spooky and other ooky things. Started out editing and writing with the kid literature group and has since had a lot of interest in publishing a young adult spooky novel called Macadamian Pliers.

Then I would like to introduce you to  fellow  kid Literature contributor Linda Cullen  L D Cullen website
Linda tells us: As early as  I  can remember I was a story teller.  I cut my  literary teeth by writing skits and plays for summer camp and neighborhood friends to act out and by creating stories for my little sister and friends, most memorable were the "Baloney Man" and "Old Man Bolton's Cabin" I can't remember a time my thoughts were not shared with a full cast of character rattling around in my brain just waiting for me to bring them to life and let them out.
It was a great disappointment to discover  a shortfall of children's books with strong exciting main characters living with disabilities when I was looking for books  to share with  my "Differently-Abled  foster children. This set me on the path that lead me to my maiden book The Ability Kids and K-9 Agency in "The Case of the Peanut Butter Bandit" 

Now I have to answer some questions. I Karen Emma Hall will answer them as best I can. At the very most you will learn something by the time you get to the end of it. At the very worst, you will have spilled your cup of tea/coffee over yourself after falling asleep. 
1.  What am I working on?
What am I working on! What am I not working on might be more apt of late. I am working on so many projects and so many levels, give it half a chance it could make you dizzy, let alone me dizzy.
 How do I do it?
I haven't the foggiest. no idea. I am still throwing it out there, catching a few things, juggling others, then throwing stuff back out again, on my merry-go-round journey.
I just know I like it, and I have a desire and a want to do it.
I think of it as my work, my living, because it is in a way.
Since starting the Kid Literature group and website and all of the social media outlets from it, I had little time to do my writing or art. I have tried to correct this, and schedule my day so I get time to do my writing, reading and art, as all three are my passions.
I have a series of owl books that are now with the publishers and have been taken down from the internet in preparation for their print launch date. (I do not at this moment know when that is exactly, but it is very exciting).
I have a quote book I am preparing ready to go into the new kindle world.
I have a book with front cover illustrations ready to send out to publishers, a middle grade book about a boy in a spooky castle, with crazy characters. Front cover by Eric Heyman
I have an adult thriller book I have picked back up to continue with (this was started quite a while ago, and left on the shelf for longer than i would have liked).
I have a new website design going up very soon with video reviews of children's books as well as written reviews. 
So it is all going on. I also have many people to keep in touch with who help support the Kid Literature group. We were originally called Kid Literature Authors, but we are now including a wider audience to include more than authors. 
Once My Owl books are actually out as a real book! (hold on while I do a whoppee dance)  I will be reading them to children in libraries and in schools. I am looking forward to that. 

How is my work different?

I wanted to have a series of books about animals I love.
I know this is very common, but I wanted it to have a special magic touch, that would make people remember when they were a child and they had their most favourite book read to them, and they wanted it read over and over again. I had no idea what to call my magic owl which was the animal I had decided on as I was crazy about them, until we went to visit a rescue owl centre. We were won over by Phoenix the owl, so I at first decided to call the owl Phoenix. But then he was to be a new baby owl so he turned into Teeny Pheeny. Mrs Phoenix then became his mother in the stories. The other difference is I wanted to illustrate the full book myself. Because I could see how he looked, so I wanted the correct image. An owl that could be easily distinguished from any other. 

I am a chameleon in my work and art, as I can adapt to writing for children, young adults and adults. I also love experimenting with art forms, and have been pleased to learn a few new art forms recently while on holiday. 
Why do I write what I do? 
I remember doing a test in English when I was 10 years old, and you could write a story, and I just started a sentence about this magic ring, and my pen just flew away with me. I got a very good mark for it, and after that I realised I loved writing. I had always been more of a book worm, than a writer, and what initially and commonly put me off writing until I got into my twenties was the fact everyone was so down on authors. How hard it was to get books published, how you would never accomplish it, as even the best authors fell along the way. It did sort of put me off, so I decided to write just for me, I had  no intention of sharing them. A bit like a diary, you just want to keep it to yourself, and I had it in my head it would stop any criticism and people laughing at what I had written.

Once in High school I presented a story called 'The Year they cancelled Christmas' and it received good reviews from high school teachers and people viewing it at the time.
I had to hand that one in, it was part of a module, and I was surprised at the response. the positive response.
I then had a lot of years working in schools, and hospitals. I had a lovely family and I ventured off into art and crafts my biggest passion. I eventually decided to combine the two passions when I realised how much the children loved the stories I told. The rest happened quite recently. In a whirlwind Kid Literature was set up where we help support and promote literacy. It wasn't even considered a challenge, It just happened through my love of literacy and passion for getting literacy out into children's hands. This whirlwind is twirling higher and higher, and is taking flight in so many directions. We do promotion on a few social media platforms, facebook and twitter being the most popular. Then we are on goodreads - pinterest - instagram - goodle+ 
We do reviews, which will soon incorporate video reviews of your book as well as the written. We send out amazing art and quotes to inspire and lift you every day of the week. We write stories and let you know about upcoming events and free books. We have a video out soon that is to promote the kid literature. All of this will be going on our newly designed website. 

My writing process 

My writing process is weird. Sometimes I can have an idea, and it can take ages for the characters and the plot to progress, even before I have written much.
Then other times like Teeny Pheeny, It was as if it was just there in the air, and I picked it out of the air and wrote it down. My pen ran away with me and I had the first two stories wrote (albeit edited) within a day. I worked many hours that day, but I just wrote and wrote until I came to the end, as if it was there ready just to put on paper. (I wish all my stories and writing was like that).
I can't even say I get de-motivated. I love art and reading and writing so much, it is my life. I am very lucky to have a family of arty people and one who reads all day and another who writes and edits all day. :)
I love my friends on social media, especially the kid literature friends, and I am happy to help any who return the favour. I cannot express enough that helping others is going to get you a lot further than trying to plug away at marketing your own book. As it is just going to bounce off the social media walls and hit you right back in the face. You will be talking to yourself in a huge void and it isn't going to get you anywhere fast. However popular or famous you are. If you would like to keep up with me please find me every day here KarenEmmaHall on Facebook and wait till next week for the new website launch! Twitter and facebook will have the news first! 

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