Around the Web #3 – Book Review Edition

So for this issue of Around the Web, I’ve decided to focus on book reviews by other reviewers.  I can’t review every book that is written, but I can give you as many quality reviews as possible.

Crimson & Cream:

Check out The Fantasy Book Review’s review of C.M. Skiera’s Crimson & Cream.

What I especially like about this review is that Alison Mirabella of FBR addresses the common fear of readers wishing to purchase self-published books.  Self-published books have a reputation (some of it justified but much of it not) of being poorly edited and designed.  Crimson & Cream is neither.  In fact Alison goes on to say:

“….this book is an amazing example of the quality that should be expected from any self-published novel: the cover was professional, there were no discernable errors, and the writing was on par with many published authors. So, for anybody looking to self-publish, this book should serve as a model of how to do it right.”

For the full review, please visit The Fantasy Book Review!  Also, please visit C.M. Skiera’s blog by clicking here!

Isaac Asimov’s Foundation


There is no doubting that Isaac Asimov was one of the pillars of early science fiction.  He is also an author that I more often than not enjoyed immensely.  So I was pretty stoked to come across this recent review of Isaac Asimov’s Foundation.  And by recent I mean like January 23, 2013.  I always think it good to occasionally take a break and go back enjoying the basics of science fiction/fantasy.

Remember a time when the most common themes and plot devices were still shiny and new to you?!  Seems like forever, huh?  To me that’s what authors such as Asimov, Wells, and Huxley represent.

So check out what Wendy Van Camp had to say about this early science fiction masterpiece!

Read the END First


So I came across a review on the Exquisite Corpse of Read the END First. The first thought that came to mind was “Yuck….an anthology about the end of the world.”  My second thought was “Yuck….horror.”

In my opinion there are only two authors worth reading when it comes to either horror or apocalypse:  Stephen King and Robert McCammon.  King’s The Stand and McCammon’s Swan Song are my two all time favorite apocalypse stories.  McCammon’s Usher’s Passing is one of my favorite dark, dirty reads of all time.

But reading Tracie McBride’s review actually made me want to pick up this anthology.  What an ingenious idea!  Twenty-four (24) apocalyptic stories, each one set in a different time zone!  Tracie’s review gives the readers enough information to pique our interest while holding back everything that will scare the pants off of us.  I can’t wait to read this!  You should check out Tracie McBride’s Exquisite Corpse blog for more goodies!

Hope you enjoyed this issue of Around the Web!  Check out ATW#1 and ATW#2 for more goodies!  As always, follow us on twitter!


Around the Web #2

Leigh Evans

Leigh Evans


Check out The Cuddlebuggery Book Blog’s  Interview: Leigh Evans.  Her best advice comes in her answer about how important research is.

Leigh illustrates the fundamental idea of “write what you love” (as opposed to the inane advice of “write what you know”).

Leigh is an urban fantasy writer whose debut novel Trouble with Fate just went live in December 2012 and she has a deal to write four more books in the Mystwalker series.  She lives in Southern Ontario with her husband.   Bookworm readers may recognize her from Around the Web #1 where we highlighted her fateful encounter with Patrick Rothfuss.

Elmore Lenord’s Tips

Writing Tips:

Want to know how the greats do it?  (WRITE THAT IS!  GET YOUR HEAD OUT OF THE GUTTER!) has a great article that includes advice from some of the most prolific writers of our time.

Some of my favorite are #10 Elmore Leonard – “Leave out the parts that people skip”, #6 George Orwell – “Break any of these rules sooner than saying anything outright barbarous”, #1 Neil Gaiman “Write”, and of course #13 Henry Safire – “Take the bull by the hand and avoid mixing metaphors”.

Robert Evert

Blog Highlight:

So this week I decided to highlight Robert Evert.  Who is Robert Evert, you may ask?  I came across Robert by chance.  He posted asking for opinions on the cover of his upcoming book in a G+ community that I was a part of.

After giving my opinion, I got to talking with him.  What I found was an intelligent, humble new author with a lot of promise.  I was already planning on picking up his book when released in February due to the awesome cover and blurb.  But interacting with him actually made me wish it were coming out sooner than February.  

The Riddle in Stone is a fantasy tale about a middle aged librarian who always wanted to be a hero and soon learns that being a hero is a lot harder than just reading about it in his books.  Robert blogs over at and he also agreed to do an author interview later this month.

Hope you enjoyed this issue of Around the Web!  As always, follow us on twitter!



Around the Web #1

Naomi Musch

Naomi Musch


Check out The Reader’s Realm Interview: Naomi Musch.  Her list of books on the craft of writing (the last question) is full of gold nuggets for authors.

Her advice to authors just starting out is also a jewel:  “Writers must first be readers. Now let’s narrow that down. There are hundreds of great lessons to learn from reading, but one of the more difficult is to learn how to craft story beginnings that are able to hook readers interest without resorting melodrama.”

Naomi Musch is a historical romance writer published by Desert Breeze Publishing.  She lives in Wisconsin with her husband and enjoys being close to her five children and three grandchildren.

Patrick Rothfuss and Leigh Evans

TOR Article:

Here’s a wonderful jewel of an article written by Leigh Evans for TOR.  In the article she illustrates the advice from Naomi that I highlighted about authors must first be readers.  It was Patrick Rothfuss’s Name of the Wind that inspired her to write a letter to Rothfuss detailing how much she liked the book.

And just to show you that not all published authors are necessarily jerks, Rothfuss actually wrote her back and encouraged her to try her hand at a career in writing. Leigh’s first book Trouble with Fate was released in paperback in December 2012.

*Patrick Rothfuss also is the founder of Worldbuilders, which is definitely worth you checking out.

Online Writer’s Conference

Online Writer’s Conference:

IndieReCon is free online writer’s conference that will take place February 19-21 2013.  How does it work?  Every hour on the hour for 8 hours a day, they will highlight a different topic concerning independent publishing. 

Topics range from the very basics to marketing to industry interviews.  Here’s the link to the schedule of topics.  Anyone interested in independent publishing should sign up today!


Writer Beware ® Blogs!: 2012: Year in Review

Writer Beware ® Blogs!: 2012: Year in Review.

Image Borrowed from the Thrifty Ninja

Since dipping my toes into the blogging sphere, I’ve been doing a lot of reading of other blogs on the net.  One of the most informative for writers that I’ve found is the Writer Beware Blog. Writer Beware is the public face of the Science Fiction Fantasy Writers of America‘s Committee on Writing Scams.  Their mission is to track, expose, and raise awareness of fraud perpetrated in the publishing industry.  You don’t have to be a member of the SFWA in order to benefit from this wonderful, free service.

The 2012: Year in Review post is a great post outlines some of the most notable posts regarding publishing fraud last year.  It is a great primer to catch up on the blog!  Also if you have time you might want to check out their blog post DOJ’s eBook Price Fixing Lawsuit.  I recommend all authors to check out this blog as well as their website.

*Here’s the link to The Thrifty Ninja since I borrowed their image*

Vanity Publishing

Wonderful insight on vanity publishing. A great tool for all would be authors!  Brian Rush does a great job of explaining the publishing world in a way easy to understand for the uninitiated.  Check out my review of his book Goddess-Born.

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Brian Rush

As if we didn’t have enough reasons already to loathe and despise the Big 6 publishing companies, now they’re dirtying their hands with vanity publishing scams, and to add insult to injury this foray into the even-darker side of the publishing world is being described in press releases as publishing companies getting into “self-publishing.” Both Penguin and Simon & Schuster have bought or partnered with a vanity publishing company to lure writers into giving them their money.

Despite the press releases saying they are, Penguin and Simon & Schuster are not getting into self-publishing. Vanity publishing is not self-publishing. The Big 6 publishers will never support self-publishing in any way; self-publishing (the real thing) dooms their control of distribution, on which their profits depend, and is their death sentence. But they don’t mind fleecing would-be authors that might otherwise genuinely self-publish their work. If this isn’t final proof of just…

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