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April 2016 Blog Posts (58)

Reviews… what do they mean?

The free promotion for my book, IMAGINATION is long over and now, as I had hoped, reviews are starting to roll in. This got me thinking as I read people’s opinions of my story… what do reviews really mean?


If you’re trying to do marketing on major sites such as Bookbub or Booksends, reviews mean you must have a minimum of them to even be considered for an ad spot, and the majority better add up to four stars or more. Logic being, higher reviews helps weed out books not quite…


Added by Neil Ostroff on April 30, 2016 at 10:00am — No Comments

Taxing Times

April 30th.


My weeks get filled with a puppy dog and storytelling, and I don’t need to tell you which one is winning. My wife said it’s easier having a baby because when you put them down, they stay there, unlike our Tuppence who decides when she wants peace and quiet. It’s rather like writing in a way: once you put the words down you expect them to stay there, but they have a habit of demanding your attention. And sometimes they bite you, metaphorically speaking,…


Added by Michael on April 30, 2016 at 9:34am — No Comments

Letters from the Civil War: Henry Lawson Bert (May 29 & July 21, 1864)

Henry Lawson Bert was born at Jimstown, Ohio, on August 15, 1845, the son of Peter Bert and of Mary Frazier Bert. Henry was little more than sixteen years of age when he left his home at Tipton to enlist for the Civil War. He was not at once accepted—he was small for his age—but followed the Forty-Seventh Regiment of Indiana Volunteers from Indianapolis to Louisville, before he was finally enrolled as a drummer in Captain William M. Henley's Company I on December 21, 1861. He is…


Added by Joel Arthur Moore on April 28, 2016 at 5:09pm — No Comments

How to Improve Kids' Writing Skills this Summer?

According to the National Summer Learning Association, children tend to slip academically during the summer months. In fact, some studies have shown that students may lose between two and three months’ worth of learning in reading, and similar losses can occur in mathematical computation skills as well.

To help your child stay sharp this summer, include some academic…


Added by jessicapeckham on April 28, 2016 at 1:55am — No Comments

New Work of Fiction ‘B. S., Incorporated’ Hilariously Exposes Life in Corporate America

April 27, 2016 (Minneapolis, MN) – Authors Jennifer Rock and Michael Voss announced today that their debut novel B. S., Incorporated will be released in May 2016, published by Wise Ink Creative Publishing.


Funny, insightful, and heartfelt, B.S.,…


Added by Kelsey McBride on April 27, 2016 at 11:20am — No Comments

Letters from the Civil War: Henry Lawson Bert

Letters and diaries are often of more interest for the light they throw upon a way of life or a point of view than for their descriptions of great events. Such, to a degree, is the case with the letters of a drummer-boy that follow. His regiment, although almost constantly in active service, aside from the Vicksburg campaign, took part in few of the important battles of the Civil War. There are casual accounts here of a number, of forgotten skirmishes and expeditions, and something about the… Continue

Added by Joel Arthur Moore on April 26, 2016 at 5:08pm — No Comments

Starlight's Curse - K. C. Sprayberry, Author

Starlight's Curse - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

Ragged sobs ripped from her throat as she stood beneath the tree.  She raised a shaky hand toward the body, her fingers reaching for a white rectangle pinned to a bright red turtleneck sweater... This was her…


Added by Martha A. Cheves on April 26, 2016 at 8:33am — No Comments

Loving Earth, Loving Yourself

Welcome to Brenda's Blog



Added by Brenda Joyce Hoffman on April 25, 2016 at 4:30pm — No Comments

Authors John Lipscomb and Adrianne Lugo Announce Book Signing in St. Louis

April 25, 2016 (St. Louis, MO) – Authors John Lipscomb and Adrianne Lugo announced today that they will be at Left Bank Books in St. Louis, MO on May 18, 2016 at 7:00PM to do a book signing for their memoir, The Panting and the Piano.


“We are…


Added by Kelsey McBride on April 25, 2016 at 11:45am — No Comments

Five Summer Bridge Activities to Head Start Student Success

Summer is finally here! That means a few months respite from all the homework folders, reading logs, and school newsletters parents have to check every day. Sadly, it’s also a time when many students forget some of what they’ve worked so diligently to learn. The good news is that there are many hands-on summer activities for parents who want to give their children an academic boost. Even students who excel in their studies could benefit from a refresher before fall rolls around.…


Added by jessicapeckham on April 25, 2016 at 2:18am — No Comments

Severed Threads - Kaylin McFarren, Author

Severed Threads - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish


"Somewhere on board the ship is the gift Mai Le intended for her lover. According to ancient scrolls handed down by my grandfather, it was hidden in a handcrafted box disguised as a Chinese betrothal chest. After a…


Added by Martha A. Cheves on April 23, 2016 at 3:11pm — No Comments

Rosie Claverton Talks about her Mystery Novel, 'Captcha Thief'


Added by Mayra Calvani on April 23, 2016 at 2:38pm — No Comments

The Puppy is WInning at the Moment

April 23rd. 2016


It’s been a hard week. Puppies don’t realise what a strain they put on their owners. I’ve been exercising muscles that have been dormant for ages. How do you make a garden puppy proof? A lot of hard work. How can you get work done when you are keeping an eye on the little one because your wife is having a well-deserved break from it all? Me and Tuppence fell asleep while I was on duty. Fortunately she woke me up before my wife came home. But I have…


Added by Michael on April 23, 2016 at 8:25am — No Comments

Book Review: ‘Ninth-Month Midnight’ by Marie Bacigalupo

Nine Month Midnight by Marie Bacigalupo was a deeply compelling, at times heart-wrenching story, about grief and the desperate need of a mother to reunite with her dead child. Since losing her four-year old precious daughter to cancer a year ago, Dolores Walsh has been living in limbo, like a…


Added by Mayra Calvani on April 22, 2016 at 11:14am — No Comments

Critical Reading: Tips for Parents

Between the Common Core State Standards and corresponding PARCC assessment (which will eventually be in lieu of the New Jersey ASK test), students are required to read more complex texts and answer questions that require a higher degree of critical thinking skills.

Components of Critical Reading

image credits: anak damai sejahtera

To help your…


Added by jessicapeckham on April 22, 2016 at 1:14am — No Comments

Techniques to Integrate “Vocabulary Acquisition and Use” into Lesson Plans – by Julie Lyons

Tired of students using words such as “good”, “nice”, or “stuff” in their writing? Wondering how to develop your students’ vocabulary? One way to think about this goal is in terms of the Common Core State Standards. By using the standards as a guide, it is possible to make more informed decisions about which activities and lessons will build a richer vocabulary for our students. Below are several ideas to get you started with vocabulary acquisition and use into lesson plans(headings are…


Added by jessicapeckham on April 22, 2016 at 12:30am — No Comments

Letters from the Civil War: Felix Voltz (June 2, 1865)

Felix Voltz was 18 years old (possibly younger) when he ran away from home on January 30, 1865 to enlist (to his family's dismay). He mustered out with the company on July 1, 1865, at Arlington Heights, Virginia, and served as a drummer in the 187th Regiment, New York Volunteer Infantry for five months.

Felix wrote letters to his family in Elmira, New York, which describes the rigors of Union Army life from February through June 1865. The letters are held in the Special…


Added by Joel Arthur Moore on April 21, 2016 at 5:07pm — No Comments

Do the Smarter Balanced Assessments Help Your Child Get Into College?

Like the counterculture era soul song, “War,” sung by Edwin Starr, the Smarter Balanced Assessments get people riled enough to ask a key question: “What is it good for?” Whereas you may be of the opinion that the war is good for “absolutely nothing,” it’s difficult to assign the same value to something so relatively new like the Smarter Balanced Assessments. These are tests that are supposed to, according to…


Added by jessicapeckham on April 21, 2016 at 1:06am — No Comments

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