Ellwyn’s Blog

Teddy Bear Tea On Once Upon A Storytime Live

On Thursday, October 22nd at 10:30am PT/1:30pm ET I’m returning to Caren Glasser’s show. I will be reading my book, Teddy Bear Tea.

It’s teatime in the forest! Come along with Teddy and his Woodland Friends for a lively tea party filled with enchantment and fun. Don’t be late. They’re serving tea promptly at three! 

Click HERE to get a reminder to join the fun live! Click HERE to to pick up a copy of the book.
Are you looking for something fun to do? You can watch any of Caren’s other shows by clicking here: www.onceuponastorytime.live/episodes

All shows stream live on the Once Upon A Storytime Live Facebook Page and the www.OnceUponAStorytime.live website where you can also download the free activity sheets.

Click below to like and follow the show
 on Social Media:
Once Upon A Storytime Live on Facebook,
Once Upon A Storytime Live on YouTube
Once Upon A Storytime Live on Instagram

I’m A Messterpiece By Lauren Eresman

Available on Amazon

Have you ever heard a child say something negative about themselves, such as “I can’t do it!” “I’m not good at this!” or “I’m a mess!”?

Confidence is like a muscle that needs exercise throughout our lives. Helping children develop a supportive, resilient, and compassionate inner voice is a great place to start.

FOLLOW ALONG on a frustrating week that emphasizes how children can view mistakes as a part of learning and see themselves as a work in progress — a perfectly imperfect MESSterpiece!

GRAB a copy of this book for all the kids in your life that could use an extra BOOST of self-love.

About The Author

Lauren Eresman is one of those crazy over-committed moms that rarely says “NO.”

Following a journey to find herself and build boundaries, she recently fulfilled a lifelong dream of becoming a children’s book author.

Her desire to encourage young girls to feel empowered in their own skin has ignited a fire.

Lauren is passionate about telling stories that encourage girls to shatter the glass slippers, choose their own footwear, AND pick the path their feet will take. Making mistakes, being imperfect, or stumbling while they chase their dream is perfectly fine too.

Giving up is the only thing that’s not allowed.

You can find Lauren online at www.laureneresman.com.

Lauren’s Books:
The Cherry on Top (2019)
The Treehouse Trio (2020)

Interview With Author Anca Antoci

By way of introduction, here is Anca Antoci’s bio:

Anca Antoci started out as a fanfiction writer and then moved on to write her own story. Thus her debut novel, Forget Me Not, got published in January 2020.

Her fanfiction stories are still available on her blog. Living in Romania, Anca speaks English as a second language.

Because she’s a passionate reader, Anca started a blog where she reviews fantasy books called Summon Fantasy.

When she’s not reading or writing, Anca loves cooking and watching movies with her daughter while eating nachos.

Hello, Anca, welcome to Angel Kiss Publications. Thank you for agreeing to do this interview.

Thank you for having me.

When did the writing bug ensnare you?

It’s hard to tell. I think I’ve always made up stories in my mind but didn’t put them on paper. My earliest attempt at writing fiction was in fifth grade when I wrote a story titled Nina’s Cat.

I don’t remember much about it, but at that time I was watching Lassie (for those too young to have seen the show, it was about a boy and his dog). My story was about a girl and her cat. Was it a spin-off, a fanfiction, who knows? It was a lifetime ago!

Is writing your full-time profession?

No, it’s more of a hobby. I love making stories up, but that doesn’t pay the bills. My husband and I have a small IT consulting business.

Some days are busier than others. I schedule my writing whenever I have free time.

How long have you been writing?

On and off for eleven years. I started writing fanfiction in 2009 when Blood Ties (a Canadian tv-show) got canceled in the second season and the fans were left high and dry.

I needed closure, so I wrote Until We Meet Again, a fanfiction to offer a better-suited closure to the story. I started working on my debut novel (I didn’t know it was going to be a novel, it was just something I was writing for fun) in 2012.

How many published books have you written?

So far, only one. Forget Me Not is the first part of the Chimera Trilogy. The second part is almost ready and will come out in December 2020.

Which genre do you write?

For the moment I’ll stick with Fantasy, which is the same genre I read most days.

What do you find most challenging writing for this genre?

It’s pretty challenging coming up with a magic system that works and remaining consistent throughout the story.

What are you working on now?

The sequel to Forget Me Not. I haven’t decided on a title yet, but I’ve been toying with the words Web of Lies because there’s a lot of deception going on.

Nothing is what you think it is. I still have a couple more chapters to write before I finish my first draft.

Where do you find inspiration for your characters?

To be honest, I don’t think much about it. An idea just pops into my mind and then I just go with the flow. The same with the character names. There’s no hidden meaning behind them.

What has been your most rewarding experience since publishing your work?

Seeing that people are enjoying my book. So far, I’ve got pretty good feedback (way better than I expected) and mostly positive reviews.

I’m still waiting for that dreaded one-star review that every author gets at one point, but I’m relieved that it hasn’t come yet.

I know I still have room to grow, and that’s a good thing but nothing boosts your morale like being appreciated.

What advice would you give to authors just starting out?

Don’t overthink it. You won’t start your career with a masterpiece, nobody does. Do your best, have your friends read it and give you feedback, get a couple of beta readers if you can, and polish it the best you can.

Then release it into the world and start working on your next project. Learn from the mistakes you made on your first book and do better on your next one. And so on. Practice makes perfect. Don’t stop writing!

Is there anything else you’d like your readers to know about you?

That I cherish every feedback I get and that I try to make more time for writing whenever that is possible.

What message are you sharing in your books?

The message is that whenever you’re going through tough times, you need to find the power to move forward within yourself. Sometimes it takes an extreme situation to find your inner strength.

What are your favorite books?

Ah, there are too many to count. It’s like asking a mother to name her favorite child.

If you could create an author’s group with writers from any time period, who would you invite?

I read mostly contemporary fiction, so I would probably invite Anna Mocikat, Elle Lewis, Jen Pretty, Gretchen Galway…that’s just off the top of my head.

Who has influenced your writing the most?

I don’t know if there’s an author in particular that has influenced my writing. Perhaps Anne Bishop, a little bit. Her books are widely appreciated, yet when I read I often notice the lack of story structure or character arc.

But at the same time, I can’t stop reading. It’s not the story, but the storytelling that draws me in. In a similar manner, I’ve had people tell me “I couldn’t put it down!” even though I wasn’t happy with the structure I created for the story. But I’m trying to learn from that and plot better.

When you’re not writing where can we find you?

Well, my day job keeps me behind a computer, so…I’ll be in my office, working.

A movie producer wants to turn your book into a movie and you get to make a cameo. What would you do in the movie?

Oh, I’d be Gloria, the cashier at the grocery store.

An elf named 12-25 approaches you. He’s sneezing, wheezing, coughing and there’s a strange tattoo of a snoring dog on his cheek. What do you do?

I chant a protection spell against Covid-19.

What are your most effective marketing strategies?

I’ll let you know as soon as I find out. I spent most of my free time writing.

I’ll have to study that more after I release my second book. I assumed no one would want to take a chance on a first-time author.

So I needed to prove that my first book wasn’t an accident of a whim, that I’m consistent.

Do you have a website/Facebook page, etc?

Yes. Actually, I have two pages: one is my author page and the other is for my blog.

https://www.facebook.com/AncaAntociBooks
https://www.facebook.com/summonfantasy

Instagram: https://instagram.com/summon_fantasy?igshid=13bmisx3nptj1
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19891304.Anca_Antoci
Twitter: Https://www.twitter.com/ancaantoci
Blog: https://www.summonfantasy.com/

Where can we find your books?

I published on Amazon, but there are a few other stores where people can find my book.

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3jr5Nfs

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/forget-me-not-anca-antoci/1136304829?ean=9781653138951

Book Depository: https://www.bookdepository.com/Forget-Me-Not-Anca-Antoci/9781653138951

Walmart: https://www.walmart.com/ip/Chimera-Forget-Me-Not-Paperback-9781653138951/734867512

Thank you, Anca, for spending time with us and sharing your story. We wish you continued success and lots of luck!

Anca’s Featured Book

Summary:
Deceiving the vampire that saved her could get her killed, but it’s a risk she’s willing to take. When tragedy strikes, Rae makes a terrible choice and struggles with the aftermath.

In the wilderness of the Tongass rainforest, she finds herself hunted by creatures of hell, monsters she never dreamed could be real.


A hidden world, an ancient race, and a secret she discovers by accident give a new meaning to her life, but only if she can escape and return to civilization.

If she is to survive, Rae must comply with Ari, her reluctant hero, and allow him to wipe away any memory of this realm. Knowledge is power, but is it worth dying for?

When push comes to shove, that’s when real strength emerges. What would it take to discover what you’re made of.


Book links:
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B083G3SBSK/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_l1CDFbH33XCSX
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50283836-forget-me-not?ac=1&from_search=true&qid=VvcRjyCE8Z&rank=1

Interview With Author Donna McDine

By way of introduction, here is Donna McDine’s bio:

Award-winning children’s author, Donna McDine’s creative side laid dormant for many years until her desire to write sparked in 2007.

With six children’s picture books to her credit, McDine’s adventures continue as she ignites the curiosity of children through reading.

She writes and moms from her home in the historical hamlet Tappan, NY. McDine is a member of the SCBWI.

Hello, Donna, welcome to Angel Kiss Publications. Thank you for agreeing to do this interview.

Thank you for having me.

When did the writing bug ensnare you?

When I was a young child, I would watch the show Lou Grant with my dad and enjoyed the whole reporter concept.

However, I never pursued writing as my career. Many moons later, I had children and as we would curl up with books and read together, I envisioned myself writing my own books.

I then enrolled in the Institute of Children’s Literature writing course, and I’m pleased to be an award-winning published children’s author.

Is writing your full-time profession?

No, unfortunately not.

As much as I would enjoy writing full time the consistency of a steady paycheck with health benefits keeps me working at my “day job” as an administrative assistant, and I also work as a Reiki Master Teacher.

How long have you been writing?

I have been actively writing since 2007.

Have you won any literary awards?

Angel’s Forever Home

2019 Purple Dragonfly Honorable Mention Picture Books Six and Older

Dee and Deb Off They Go, Kindergarten First Day Jitters

2016 Purple Dragonfly Book Award Honorable Mention 5 & Younger 

2016 Story Monster Approval

Powder Monkey

2015 Purple Dragonfly Book 1st Place Historical Fiction 

2014 Story Monster Approval

A Sandy Grave
2014 Purple Dragonfly Book Awards 1st Place Picture Books 6 and Older 

2014 The Beach Book Festival Awards Honorable Mention 

2014 Story Monster Approval

Hockey Agony

2015 Purple Dragonfly Book Award Honorable Mention

2014 New England Book Festival Children’s Books Honorable Mention 

2014 Story Monster Approval  

“Hockey Agony” & “Images of the Past”

78th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition – Honorable Mention – Children’s/Young Adult Fiction category ~ “The Hockey Agony”

78th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition – Honorable Mention – Children’s/Young Adult Fiction category ~ “Images of the Past” 

The Golden Pathway

2012 Readers Favorite International Book Awards Honorable Mention Children K-3rd General 

2011 Literary Classics Silver Award Recipient Picture Book Early Reader 

2011 Literary Classics Finalist Picture Book Early Reader 

2011 Literary Classics Seal of Approval Picture Book Early Reader 

2010 Preditors & Editors Readers Poll – Top Ten – Children’s Books category 

77th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition – Honorable Mention – Children’s/Young Adult Fiction

How many published books have you written?

Six children’s books

Which genres do you write?

Picture books and middle grade

What do you find most challenging writing for these genres?

To keep the preaching aspect out of the story.

What are you working on now?

I’m collaborating on a picture book, but I’m not at the liberty to discuss the content just yet.

Where do you find inspiration for your characters?

Inspiration comes from many different avenues. When my children were younger and their friends would come to play, I would often listen into their conversations and jot down different dialogue that I found funny.

What has been your most rewarding experience since publishing your work?

Attending book festivals and conducting school visits. Unfortunately, COVID has put a stop to in-person visits and I’m looking forward to being a profiled children’s author at the 18th Collingswood Book Festival on October 3, 2020.

What advice would you give to authors just starting out?

Join a critique group and write, write, write, and read, read, read in the genre you are drawn to write in.

Can you tell us a little about your Saturday Story Time on Facebook and your blog Write What Inspires You?

As COVID placed much of the world under quarantine I was compelled to give back to families and created Story Time Facebook Live for Saturday mornings at 9 am EST.

I first started out reading my own books and put the word out there to children’s authors to submit their books for me to read. I am now booked out through November 2020.

And what’s wonderful about the live readings, Facebook automatically saves the video that can be shared to other social media platforms, providing repurposing marketing across different channels.

How can a children’s author have their book read on your Story Time?

Authors or parents can email me at donna@donnamcdine.com with their suggestion and I will be happy to review and schedule.

When my social media guru creates the promo image, I also share it to the author for their marketing toolbox.

Is there anything else you’d like your readers to know about you?

My world is diverse. I’m an administrative assistant by day and award-winning children’s author and Reiki Master Teacher by night.

I am an advocate for thinking outside the box and creating one’s true authentic life to their standards and not that of society.

What message are you sharing in your books?

Overcoming adversity and doing the right thing even if no one is watching.

What are your favorite books?

Fat Kid Rules the World, K. L. Going

Caves, Cannons, Crinolines by Beverly Stowe McClure

The Art of Psychic Reiki by Lisa Campion

If you could create an author’s group with writers from any time period, who would you invite?

The 1800’s. I find that time to be absolutely fascinating. Oftentimes women were portrayed like wilting flowers, but that was oh so not the case.

Who has influenced your writing the most?

Stephen King, K.L. Going, Beverly Stowe McClure, Margot Finke, Lisa Campion

When you’re not writing where can we find you?

I frequent the Piermont Pier that juts out onto the Hudson River or curled up with a book in my backyard sanctuary with the fire pit going now that it’s fall.

A movie producer wants to turn your book into a movie, and you get to make a cameo. What would you do in the movie?

I’d like to be the dog rescuer in Chile that saved dogs after the earthquake.

An elf named 12-25 approaches you. He’s sneezing, wheezing, coughing and there’s a strange tattoo of a snoring dog on his cheek. What do you do?

I lean in closer to check out the snoring tattoo and begin asking a ton of questions as to the significance of the snoring dog tattoo and why the cheek.

What are your most effective marketing strategies?

My live story times and interviewing fellow authors

Do you have a website/Facebook page, etc?

www.donnamcdine.com

https://www.facebook.com/DonnaMcDineAuthor
https://www.instagram.com/donna.mcdine

Where can we find your books?

At my website www.donnamcdine.com, Amazon, and Barnes and Noble

Thank you, Donna, for spending time with us and sharing your story. We wish you continued success and lots of luck!

Donna’s Featured Book

Available of Amazon

The anxiety of finding one’s own place and friends in kindergarten without the comfort of having her fraternal twin sister nearby at first overwhelms Dee. Until she realizes even without her twin, Dee and her classmates for the most part are in the same boat. Suggested age range for readers: 3-8              

Awards:

  • Purple Dragonfly Book Award Honorable Mention 5 & Younger
  • Story Monster Approved 2016

Counting And Math With Pasta And Meatballs By Amelia Griggs

Just in time for after school activities and fun, the second coloring and activity book in the Bella and Friends Learning Series is here! “Counting and Math with Pasta and Meatballs PLUS Coloring and Activity Fun!” is now live and available on AmazonClick here to learn more!

The Bella and Friends Learning Series is inspired by the books in the Bella and Mia Adventure Series, where the use of rhymes and recipes promote fun activities with parent and child. Now it’s time for more interactive and educational fun with counting and beginner Math using pasta and meatballs! Understanding numbers is important for young math learners as it promotes confidence and encourages flexible thinking.

This fun coloring and activity book contains a wide range of activities to keep kids busy for hours including:

  • Learning About Different Kinds of Pasta
  • Counting Using Different Kinds of Pasta
  • Counting Using Spaghetti and Meatballs
  • Counting and Matching with Pasta
  • Beginner Math: Adding with Pasta
  • Beginner Math: Subtracting with Pasta
  • Count, Write and Compare Meatballs 
  • Practice Addition with Meatballs
  • Practice Subtraction with Meatballs
  • Seek ‘n Find
  • Spot the Difference
  • Find the Pasta and Meatballs Maze
  • Fun Coloring Pages Throughout!

SPECIAL INTRODUCTORY PRICE THIS WEEK! HURRY AND BUY NOW BEFORE THE PRICE GOES UP!!! 

In case you missed it, the first coloring and activity book, ABC Letter Tracing PLUS Coloring and Activity Fun was released earlier this year, in March, 2020. Click here to learn more!

What’s coming next in 2020:
The third coloring and activity book, “Candy Canes, Snowflakes and Gingerbread Houses PLUS Coloring and Activity Fun!” is coming soon before the holidays. 

About The Author

Amelia Griggs is a Writer, Instructional Designer, eLearning Developer and Authopreneur. Her background is IT support and training in the corporate setting. In addition to being a tech-geek and always wanting to troubleshoot and figure out anything you want to know about computers, she enjoys researching, designing, and developing all kinds of educational materials, and writing instructional articles.

She has always loved to write. Even as a child, she loved composing stories and drawing pictures. She started out writing training manuals, but over the years, she wanted to get more creative, so after working in IT for 15 years, she went to grad school to study Instructional Design and Technology.

She fell in love with the creative process of designing training programs, developing online courses, and incorporating animation. She also discovered another untapped interest: writing and self-publishing.

For years, she  focused on “technical” writing and designing but something was missing. Her creative juices continued to flow as she discovered yet another passion: composing short stories, and more recently, writing children’s books. This allowed her to harness her love of rhyming.

Do you love to read? Do you love to write? Either way, you have something in common with Amelia. If you’re thinking of writing a book and need help with the process of writing, self-publishing and marketing, her next book series will be devoted to helping others pursue their dream of writing and self-publishing a book.

Here’s a list of her websites for reference:

* Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/author/ameliagriggs
* Computer learning website: http://easylearningweb.com
* YouTube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/easylearningweb
* Online articles: http://easylearningweb.hubpages.com/
* Tech Tips Blog: http://easylearningweb.blogspot.com/
* Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/easylearningweb
* Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ameliagwrites/
* Amelia’s Writing Corner Blog: https://ameliaswritingcorner.com/

Can I Ask You A Question?

I know this may be an easy answer for most of you, but I choose to sip tea with Teddy. Naturally, as the author of the forthcoming children’s picture book, Teddy Bear Tea I’m a tad partial, but hear me out.

Of course, I love Winnie-The-Pooh and all his lovable friends in the Hundred Acre Wood. The story and characters are beloved and classical, but everyone knows the story of Pooh Bear.

I’d like to meet some new friends and read about the fun they have in the woods. A Teddy Bear Tea in the middle of the forest with a group of adorable woodland animals sounds like a fun time. And if you’re a big hunny lover, I’m sure they’ll have some for you to stir into your tea!

Where Did The Teddy Bear Come From?

On November 14, 1902, the beginnings of the Teddy Bear occurred when President Theodore Roosevelt refused to shoot a Louisiana black bear while hunting in Mississippi. It didn’t take long for the incident to make national news and a series of imaginative events to unfold.

By November 16, political cartoonist, Clifford Berryman, got wind of it and satirized the episode in The Washington Post. Shortly after, Brooklyn candy shop owner, Morris Michtom, saw the picture and became inspired to create a stuffed bear that he named ‘Teddy’s Bear’ and dedicated to the president.

Upon receiving President Roosevelt’s permission to use his name for the toy, Michtom mass produced the bear and founded the Ideal Toy Company.

For further reading visit:

https://www.nps.gov/thrb/learn/historyculture/storyofteddybear.htm

Important Teddy Bear Dates:

National Teddy Bear Day is September 9.

National Bring Your Teddy To Work/School Day is observed on the second Wednesday of October.

Teddy Bear Picnic Day is July 10.