Lily Brooks is a passionate blogger who loves to write about travel, books, personal development, lifestyle, productivity, and more. She is currently working with CreedGriffon, an incredible series of teen fiction books for boys and girls.
Continuing on with our series highlighting some true Indie Authors of Excellence - it gives me immense pleasure to introduce you today to a Canadian Indie Author of Excellence who is both uber-talented and prolific.
Please meet, greet, and celebrate: VAL TOBIN!
Val is not just an author - Oh no, she's much more multi-talented and multi-faceted than that. Hey! She's a woman and we all know women are tremendous at being many things to many people (speaking, of course, as a mere male).
She studied general arts at the University of Waterloo, then went to DeVry Toronto to get a diploma in Computer Information Systems, working in the computer industry as a software and Web developer for over ten years, during which time she started to get serious about energy work and the paranormal and occult.
In October 2004, Val became a certified Reiki Master/Teacher. She acquired ATP® certification in March 2008, in Kona, Hawaii from Doreen Virtue PhD.
Then she started work on a bachelor of science in parapsychic science from the American Institute of Holistic Theology in March 2007 and received her degree in September 2010. After obtaining her master’s degree in parapsychology at AIHT, she has set her sights on the PhD, which she’ll pursue as time and finances permit.
At the end of October 2008, Val returned to Kona, Hawaii to complete the Advanced ATP® training and in April 2010 to take the Spiritual Writing Workshop and the Mediumship Certification class. Val wrote freelance for online magazine Suite101 and was Topic Editor for Paganism/Wicca and Webmaster Resources at Suite.
A published author, she contributed a story to Doreen Virtue’s Hay House book Angel Words.
Today, it is my absolute joy to bring you another INDIE AUTHOR OF EXCELLENCE - in the form of Sylva Fae.
One of the reasons I'm so excited about presenting Sylva to you is because she is an author of children's books. Regular readers of my blogs will know what a passion I have for children's authors and the importance of reading and literacy for children. I owe so much to my late father for the care and concern he instilled in my siblings and I for the power of the written word. His weekly trips to the Dunedin Public Library on a Saturday morning were and always will be remembered as a highlight of my childhood. Surrounded, as children are these days by the visual stimuli of video and gadgets, we sometimes forget how important reading really is to our youngsters' brain development.
It takes a special author to write for children, to make it real and believable to them and to write at a level they can both understand and still stretch for, in their literary journey. Sylva Fae writes for children and does it beautifully, so it is with real pride I give you this week's Indie Author of Excellence - Sylva Fae.
mom's favorite reads - author of the week is paulette mahurin
When Mom's Favorite Reads Magazine announced recently they were creating an author of the week award, I decided simultaneously to resurrect my popular Indie Author of Excellence Blog and tie it into these weekly awards.
I was thrilled to discover that Paulette Mahurin was to be the first recipient of this prestigious award, given that she is one of my favorite authors and indeed an amazingly compassionate and philanthropic woman. I love her books and have read all of them but even more impressive is that she gives away every cent of her royalties to saving dogs from rescue-shelters. She told me recently that profits from her book sales have saved over 2,100 dogs from kill-shelters -
HOW AWESOME IS THAT!
HOW AWESOME IS SHE!
I couldn't therefore think of a better recipient of Author of the Week and Celebrating Indie Authors of Excellence.
I'm often asked how important it is for us, as authors, to actively seek out book awards for our work. My answer is two-fold:
From the people who bring you the top-selling (free) monthly magazine, comes the opportunity of a lifetime: In association with The Fussy Librarian we have assembled some of the very best Indie Authors on the planet to offer you free or heavily discounted books over an entire weekend.
Today, I want to hand my blog over to Best-Selling Author of the Detective Sam Smith Series, Hannah Howe, who, along with her co-creators Ronesa Aveela and Denise McCabe have started the venture - MOM'S FAVORITE READS!
After an extensive search and much consideration we reach the point where I can announce the winner of the SUPREME GRUNTER AWARD for 2018.
Before we do that, though, lets quickly remind ourselves of the twelve category winners who are in line to receive this prestigious award
Whew! What an awesome selection of talented authors and exceptional books - How to choose a winner from that? Read on, dear friend, read on....
I was planning on announcing the Supreme Grunter Award in today's blog, however, I've decided to let that wait until tomorrow now and I'll introduce a new category for this year's awards - COVER OF THE YEAR.
We all know how important covers are and how they work to attract our eye to that small thumbnail, as we scroll through literally thousands of books. Cover designers are the unsung heroes of our industry, so I thought it would be nice to honour them with an award.
I've scrolled through the 180 odd books that I've read this year and chosen the six covers I think are the best of the best. It's totally subjective of course, but I know what catches my eye and in the words of an overused cliche: "I may not know much about cover design, but I know what I like:
Although I am many moons past being a Young Adult, myself, I always find these books to be refreshing and fascinating reads. I still remember teenage angst, inherent shyness and, of course, bullying. When you throw in an indie author's creativity and imagination, some of these Young Adult books are just as spectacular and thrilling as any "adult" book.
So, the nominations in this final category for 2018, are:
Science Fiction is a genre I lapped up, as a kid. I was an enormous fan of Robert A. Heinlein and I think I read every book he wrote. As an author, I am in awe of the people who write science fiction and their incredible imaginations. I do like my Science Fiction heavy on the fiction and light on the science, but nevertheless, I have read a wonderful collection of all types of Science Fiction, this year.
Again, one of my favourite categories. It's a genre I often write in and also a genre I love to read. Yes, deep down, beneath this gruff exterior you see before you, I truly am a hopeless romantic and a believer that love can conquer all - but, can it? We shall see with some of these fine Romance/Adventure books nominated for this year's awards.
Today we look at the category of Non Fiction/Memoirs. There is such as wide variety of material to choose from in this category, ranging from Self-Help books through to harrowing tales of pain, angst and suffering, and then those inspirational tomes that help us see the world in a better light. This year, I've read some wonderful books in this category, so let's get to the nominations, without further ado.
And now we come to one of the biggest categories every year, that of Murder/Mayhem. Some of my favourite indie authors write in this genre, so there is always something amazing and wonderful to choose from and this year is no exception. In fact, just choosing three finalists is a hard enough job in its own right, but here we go!
"Laughter is the best medicine". That's what they say and they are absolutely right. So much of what we see today in the world around us and so much of what we read in novels is dark, scary, and downright depressing. When we come across a book that makes us smirk, giggle, laugh and even occasionally belly-laugh, we should cherish it. Writing good humour, though, is not an easy thing to do - trust me, I've tried and it is both taxing and hard to navigate. The three authors nominated in the humour category this year have all managed to find that fine line in humour between making us smile and offending us. I salute their talents.
And, now we are up to my favourite genre - Historical Fiction!!!!
But wait, I hear you mumble, you've missed a category this year! What about Erotica? Where's the Erotica? Well, the simple truth is this - I haven't actually read any true erotica this year. I'm not sure if that means I've finally grown up, or perhaps it means I'm getting too old to enjoy the hot, steaminess of erotica. Probably the latter, but whatever, it has dropped off the Awards radar this year.
The Historical Fiction genre encapsulates some of the most talented, indie writers in the Universe and this year, I've read some amazing historical fiction. Accordingly, as in some previous years, I've chosen four nominations for this title, instead of the usual three, but even then, some superb books have had to miss out.
The nominations are:
Today we enter the world of fantasy, of make-believe and of creatures as yet unknown and unseen. This is certainly among my top genres to read and I have been lucky enough to read some absolute pearlers in this category this year. Choosing my favourite three was a difficult and painful task, but it's got to be done. So, here are the three nominations for the Fantasy Fiction category in this year's awards:
Dystopian fiction is the type of fiction that brings our worst nightmares to life. What would happen if there was a catastrophic world even and civilisation had to start all over again? How thick is our veneer of humanity and civilisation? How will we react in difficult conditions - with humanity or with our primnitive survival instincts. These books always make for a good read and the three nominations in this category are no exception.
The nominations are:
What is contemporary literature, you may well ask? To be perfectly honest, I can't give you a definitive answer to that question, but for me, in these awards, it is books that fall between the cracks of the genre categories that I have set. They tend to be books that are much more philosophical than your average novel, or they tend to be books that tell a modern story of life and relationships (outside of straight romance). I have read some absolute stunners this year and I am excited to bring them to you.
The nominations in the category of Contemporary Literature are:
I'm particularly excited about this category because I have a strong belief in the importance of reading for children. I know I owe my late father a deep debt of gratitude for introducing us kids to books at an early age. Dad took us to the library virtually every Saturday morning and there we would immerse ourselves in the world of fantasy that is books. As a Grandfather of 12 grandkids, I try to pass on my love of reading to them, but with today's electronic distractions it sometimes feels like a losing battle, however, it is one I am determined to continue.
Reading develops an area of stimulation in a child's brain that visual cues do not and for this reason alone it is critical that children read and read often.
I have been fortunate to read some stunning children's books this year and I happily give you the nominations for the Grunter's Children's Book of the Year.