Thursday, December 27, 2012

Saturday, December 22, 2012

The MANA Short Story Continues to Support The American Red Cross!

The MANA Short Story continues to grow and so has MANA's contributions to the American Red Cross! Thank you to everyone who has contributed to The MANA Short Story. This has been our longest "short story" since we started our blog!

For every 25 posts that are written, MANA will donate $10 to the American Red Cross disaster relief efforts for Hurricane Sandy. So far, MANA has donated $30 to the fund.

It's not too late to participate in the MANA Short Story which is a featured post on our blog. Anyone can add to the story. One writer began the story and other writers are adding to it. 

The MANA Short Story features the adventures of Annabelle and Prince Dylan. Find out where they are now and determine where they are going to go by adding your contribution to the story. Go to:

Let's keep going!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

"Soar with the Angels" Helps to Teach Children About Angels:

If you are a parent and are not quite sure how to teach your child about angels, then MANA has a book you will want to read to your child: Soar with the Angels: A Children's Book, by Cecilia R. Telles.

Along with beautiful illustrations, Telles uses questions and answers to delve into the subject of angels in a way that children would understand. One question Telles poses is, "What do angels look like?" Telles answers, in part: 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Thanks to You, the American Red Cross Has Another Donation

Because of all the creative writers that have contributed to The MANA Short Story, MANA has made its second donation to the American Red Cross.

Participation in The MANA Short Story has been incredible and because of you, this is the most popular short story MANA has had since starting the blog.

For every 25 posts that are written, MANA will donate $10 to The American Red Cross disaster relief efforts for Hurricane Sandy. Although it's been over a month since the superstorm hit parts of New Jersey and New York, hundreds of people still depend on The American Red Cross and other organizations to receive their food, water and clothes. Many people have not yet found a place to live. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers during this holiday season.

So far, MANA has donated $20 to The American Red Cross.

In the meantime, please continue to contribute to The MANA Short Story, which chronicles the adventures of the Prince and Annabelle. Anyone can participate in The MANA Short Story which is a featured post on our blog. The photo on the blog post was used as a prompt to begin the story. One writer began the story and other writers are adding to it.

The most recent posts have the Prince and Annabelle continuing on their journey to find Annabelle's parents. Annabelle encounters a mysterious man named Alexander Scanthius who gives her a special gift: The Diamond of Altheria. Annabelle has to guard the diamond with her life so that it will not fall into the wrong hands. She later finds out through a small green leprechaun that the diamond had the capability to find anyone in the world, even if they were in other realms. Needless to say, the Prince and Annabelle used the magic of the diamond and were transported into a different world where they met a very familiar holiday character.

Read the entire story here by clicking on this link:

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Cancer Survivor, Sherry Brackett, Now Inspires Others Through Her Photo Journal

Sherry Brackett has been on a long journey, one that many have taken and did not survive. Brackett, an author and photographer, had a near-death experience during her bout with cancer. After going through the illness, Brackett said life took on a "whole new meaning."

"It's like opening a present each day and discovering what is inside that gift," she writes on her web site.

Brackett, who describes herself as a "real miracle," created a book titled, Mother Nature's Spiritual Gift to You: A Photographic Journal, to inspire others who are going through a severe illness or other type of life-challenge. 

"The idea for this book came to me in two identical dreams within the same week," she continued. "I believe my book, Mother Nature's Spiritual Gift to You: A Photographic Journal, is an inspirational gift for anyone going through a serious illness or someone (who) just needs a bouquet of warm and fuzzy thoughts."

Brackett, who specializes in nature photos, journals about her thoughts while providing breath-taking photos of Mother Nature. For instance, in her entry titled, The Stages of Life, she writes about the Cleome, more commonly known as the "spider flower":

This flower was something I had never seen before. I found it very fascinating because it displayed all phases of life. The tall, regal stem with its spearmint-like leaves burst with this bloom. You can see the beginning buds, the partially opened flower, the fully opened flower, then, the end of the flowers. It reminded me how alike – this flower and I. We two shared the same type of life span. If you look at the flower, you can see more life than death, for the new buds are already there to add more life. It sustains itself. I am reminded that I need to keep life budding and blooming so I, too, will survive.

In addition to Brackett's entries, there are spaces for readers to write their responses to the photos or share their musings about their own personal circumstances.

Brackett wants to offer hope to all who read her book. She writes, "Reading that journal will lift your spirits and hlep strengthen your courage to turn those negatives into positives." 

This is a book for those who are trying to cope with an illness and those who have survived. 

Mother Nature's Spiritual Gift to You
Click HERE to preview Mother Nature's Spiritual Gift to You: A Photographic Journal.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

MANA IS NOW ON TWITTER! is happy to announce that we are now on Twitter! Read more articles, get more updates. 

You can find our page at

To do a search on the Twitter site, go to the search bar and type in "Marketing New Authors" or just click on the blue Twitter "bird" icon on the side of this blog.

Send us a tweet to let us know that you're following us on Twitter!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

An Interview With MANA Author Russ Grimes welcomes author Russ Grimes in his first interview for our blog. Russ Grimes is the author of Adventures of a Middle-Aged Man, his first self-published book.

His fictional work tells the story of a middle-aged man who goes on new adventures after opening a very special box and gaining extraordinary powers. The author uses writing to express his creativity and shares it with others. 

Q: Russ, What made you write Adventures of a Middle-Aged Man
A: I enjoy writing short stories. Publishing a larger story as a book seemed like a nice challenge.

Q: What was the most challenging aspect of getting this work completed and ready for the publisher? 
A: The initial comments from the reviewer. Even though there are many similarities to my family in this book, it is ultimately fictional. I had to remember not to take the comments and suggestions personally as the reviewer was trying to understand my writing and the concepts I was trying to convey to the reader.

Q: What help, if any, did you receive from the publisher? 
A: The publisher helped with the QA/QC (quality assurance/quality control) on the formatting, grammar, and content in the book, as well as assisting with the illustrations that are found throughout.

Q: Now, Russ, didn't you want to write another children's work? 
A. I am currently working on the follow up book to the first. I am currently finishing up the final 2 chapters in this sequel.

If you want to know more about becoming a MANA author, contact MANA at

Thursday, November 29, 2012

6 Questions To Answer Before Meeting Your National Novel Writing Month Deadline

It's only a matter of hours now before those of you who are writing a novel for National Novel Writing Month will upload your 50,000-word manuscript and claim your certificate of completion. 

Before you place the period at the end of your last sentence, take a few moments to answer these questions: 

• Did you get your point across? Writers are often so busy working on the plot, creating characters, describing the sights and sounds that sometimes they neglect to focus on the purpose of the story. Be sure to let readers know why you're writing the story in the first place. Is there a moral to your story? What do you want readers to take away from the story?

• Are your characters fully developed? Each character has to have a purpose, a mission for being in your story. The actions, thoughts and feelings of your characters should help to advance the plot of your story.

• Does your story flow? Moving your story forward to build up toward the end is a process that takes some thought, and possibly several rewrites. Timelines work well in moving a story along. Creating events, some action, conflicts, and deepening a mystery also add to the movement of a story.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Need a Gift Idea? Try The "Lea Song Trilogy" by JaiLeen Shepherd

If you're looking for a Christmas gift idea for youngsters or pre-teens, consider the Lea Song Trilogy. The books can be read independently of each other since each book tells its own story, or read as a trilogy. Either way, children will find these books delightful: 

Lea's Song: The Life Of A Very Special Horse
The first book of the trilogy introduces Lea, the first horse born with hooves into a herd of prehistoric horses, miniatures with soft toes. She has a multi-colored coat, unlike any member of the herd. Lea is not accepted because she looks different. Lea ventures into The Forest where no horse of The Meadow has ever gone before. She carries the love and strength taught by her parents into each challenge she faces. Eventually, Lea grows a spectacular horn and each time she helps someone, it grows a new knob. 

This book targets pre-teens and early teens who are confused about their identity and need to learn how to establish themselves. It is also for younger children who feel they must be a bully to be recognized and for children who are the brunt of the bully's teasing. 

Anan: Sequel to Lea's Song. In this continuation of the story, Anan becomes a part of a new family. Anan encounters a dangerous bully, falls in love, has a foal, and encounters the final challenge–death. This story is beautifully told story for pre-teens, and for those who are trying to find their paths in this very challenging world. It is through this story about special horses that 10 year olds through 13 year olds will be able to relate. Basic values and lessons of life are woven through this book, one reviewer says, and those include seeking one's path, accepting differences, being thankful for everyone and everything, and accepting oneself.

Suzi-Q, a spirited little horse who is wise beyond her years, becomes a caregiver for Ashie, born with deformed fetlocks. Their path takes them to meet Anan¹s friends and families and the masterful teacher, St. William Buffalo, who tells them they are Teachers of Love, the same path of Lea and Anan. They help to change the Demons of the Dark to become Servers of the Light as they fulfill their own life¹s desires.
This book is for everyone who wants to believe that change can take place and that dreams can be fulfilled.

These books are available for $9.95 each or $24.95 for the complete trilogy, a $5 savings. And remember, $7 will be donated to the American Red Cross for each purchase made. To preview the books, go to

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Help, I'm Stuck in the Middle of My Story! Now What?

Developing the middle of a story when you don't know what to write is like getting stuck in quicksand; you're sinking fast and don't know what to do. If this describes where you are now, then you are in good company. Anyone who has ever written an article, an essay, a short story or a novel knows first-hand about what you are going through now.

The middle part of a novel is where writers give up their hope of completing their manuscript because they are not sure how to move the story along and further develop the characters. 

This article attempts to give you, the writer, just a couple of ideas. However, there are multiple ways of accomplishing this feat. Remember to do what works the best for you And, if you are writing a novel for National Novel Writing Month, these ideas may help you to move forward so that you can meet your November 30, 2012, deadline. 

Saturday, November 10, 2012

On Veteran's Day, Remember Veterans and Soldiers Currently Serving

In honor of Veteran's Day,  MANA is featuring A Soldier's Poetic Response: A Slice of His Life by Captain Adrian D. Massey and A Collection of Prayers by an Alpha Man by Dr. Clarence C. Straham, Veteran and Professor of Mathematics.

The work by Massey is a provocative collection of poetry that covers all aspects of life. It is a fine work for anyone who loves poetry. And for educators, this is a fine work to use as a literary selection.

The work by Straham is a modern-day Book of Psalms that addresses every challenge a person all face. It is an inspiring work. The works by Straham and Massey are fine books by a veteran and a soldier for one who wants to celebrate Veteran's Day!

Although Veteran's Day is only one day in the year, every day of the year, remember soldiers currently serving and those who have served. Also, help MANA contribute to the aid of those who have been challenged by Hurricane Sandy. Purchasing a book by a soldier or veteran will help honor these men as well as those who are currently in need.

Our Price: Make a purchase and MANA will donate the purchase amount to the American Red Cross for its Hurricane Sandy disaster relief efforts.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Help the American Red Cross through the MANA Short Story

MarketingNewAuthors has a different kind of offer for you that won't cost you any money yet will help many people recovering from  the devastating effects of Hurricane Sandy.

MANA is inviting everyone to participate in The MANA Short Story which is a featured post on our blog. The goal is to use the photo on the post as a prompt to begin writing a story. No more than five sentences are needed.

For every 25 posts that are written, MANA, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this month, will donate $10 to the American Red Cross.

Your literary contribution is a unique way to give to the American Red Cross from your heart.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

MANA To Donate Rebates to the American Red Cross for Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief

As we watch the news and look at photos online of the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, we at MANA want to say that our prayers and thoughts go out to the hurricane survivors and their families.

It's encouraging to see the generous donations coming in to volunteer organizations like the American Red Cross. It's also heartening to see partisan politics put aside, albeit briefly, to focus on what really matters–helping those in need.

In a previous holiday promotional post titled "MANA's Lucky 7," MANA offered a special $7 rebate. Because of the drastic circumstances caused by the storm, MANA has changed this so that the $7 rebate will go instead to the American Red Cross's Hurricane Sandy disaster relief efforts. Visit the blog post, "MANA's Lucky 7" for more information on the rebate.

In addition, any self-publishing plans purchased between now and December 31, 2012, MANA will donate 10 percent of the money received to the American Red Cross.

We congratulate and salute the first responders and volunteers who risked their lives for the sake of others.  You are all in our thoughts.


The MANA Team

10 More Notable Quotes About Books and Writing

We love quotes about books, actually we love everything about books. Read more quotes here:

10 More Notable Quotes About Books and Writing

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Join The MANA Short Story


The first person to post should use the photo as a prompt. No more than five sentences are needed. Of course, more are fine.

Then, the next person should add onto the first post. After that every person should add to the story of the previous person.

Let's see how this story progresses. Make this story your story. And, yes, you can post more than one time.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Ready! Set! Write During National Novel Writing Month in November

Starting November 1, thousands of writers across the world will begin their quest to write the novel that they have been putting off writing for years. 

November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), an annual event sponsored by a nonprofit organization called, The Office of Letters and Light. 

NaNoWriMo challenges individuals to channel their "inner author" and write a 50,000-word fiction novel "from scratch" in 30 days during the month of November. 

Grant Faulkner, executive director of National Novel Writing Month, says, "NaNoWriMo is the writing world's version of a marathon. Writers exit the month with more than a novel; they've experienced a transformative creative journey."

According to the organizers, NaNoWriMo is the "world's largest writing event and nonprofit literary crusade."A press release about the event says there are no judges, no prizes, and entries are deleted from the server before anyone even reads them. 

Thursday, October 11, 2012


Welcome to the First Issue of THE MANA SUNSET (MANA) is a company that provides more than publishing, marketing and distribution services for authors and small publishers. 

MANA represents different authors and small publishers' publications on its web site. And now, this newsletter is an added service that MANA will provide for people who love to write and read good writing.

MANA is focused on helping good writers become better. Also, it wants to give newly published authors an avenue to expose their work. THE MANA SUNSET will serve this purpose at no cost to anyone who reads it.

THE MANA SUNSET will come out six times a year––October, December, February, April, June, and August. A paid internship for college journalism majors to set up and edit next year's issues will be available. Contact MANA for more details at or call 734-975-0028.


Banned From Being Distributed in France

Contains Provocative Information for Parents who Fear Child Indoctrination 

The Real Reason for the War on Terror

Robin de Ruiter and Fritz Springmeier have done their homework. Published by Amsterdam-based Mayra Publications, this book demonstrates more than unfounded theories. This books shows there is a group of "the privileged chosen" that is focused on controlling the world's fate. John Kennedy's death did not just occur. 911 did not just happen because of some Al-Qaeda terrorists.

The thoroughly documented details force every reader to reconsider several historical events that have had political implications. Worldwide Evil and Misery: The Legacy of the 13 Satanic Bloodlines answer the major question, Yes, a conspiracy does exist! The "privileged chosen" has a long-standing plan, and this work documents it. Worldwide Evil and Misery shows the power of research. This is a work for those who respect the power of the written word. Available in English and Spanish. To order the book, go to


Professor Gregory Shafer writers: "Facing the blank page is perhaps the most intimidating part of writing. With a flurry of ideas blowing chaotically in our heads, it is amazing that anything ever gets written. The key to starting the writing process and avoiding what has become as writer's block is to remember that writing is very much like planting seeds. Each time we write paragraphs, we lay down another set of ideas that help us to generate other ideas. The process is organic and self-perpetuating. 

The key is to write so that you have something upon which to build. Each paragraph we pen is filled with a direction, with a life of its own. And while some of these ideas will never flower, others will take root and become the first draft of our paper. So, I keep a pad of paper close and free write while I eat breakfast or while I'm relaxing...

The first step, then, is to ask yourself what it is you want to say to your audience. You could, for instance, reflect on the terrible absence of morals in society by describing a mugging and providing images of the people who are too busy to help or intercede. If such a description is effective, you'll never have to say a thing about the ignominy of the event, since it will all be obvious. Your description will do your talking for you."

To order the book, go to


Russ Grimes at a book signing

As a child, Russ Grimes always enjoyed fantasies and stories of adventures. These genres gave him the basis for his work. He wanted to write a story that children could enjoy. He wanted to give children a superhero who could be a real person, a loving father and a husband who happens to gain super powers. This was the basis for his writing of The Adventures of a Middle-Aged Man. He plans to write a sequel to this book by 2013. To find out more information about 
this book, go to: 


Grammar is personal. As one gets older, in many cases any correction is not taken well. This newsletter is for all writers at every level of skills. So, this section should be relevant to some of you as budding writers or experienced writers who have a hidden fear of hoping the grammar check on the computer does not fail you.

Why do you writer "have come" or "have gone" or "have seen" and not "have came" or "have went" or "have saw"?

Did you know that "have" is a helping verb that can be used with only one group of verbs? That group is Group 4.

The four main verb groups are:

Group 1    come          go           see
Group 2    came         went        saw
Group 3    coming      going      seeing
Group 4    come         gone       seen

The Group 2 main form of a verb never has any helping verb before it. Yet, Group 4 main verbs MUST have a helping verb before it:

has, have, had, is, am, was, were, be

So, for the Standard English dialect, this is why "have come," "have gone," and "have seen" are correct. Although the work will be in the passive voice (we can discuss this in the next issues), "is come," "is gone," and "is seen" are correct, too.


Marion Cornett moved into the bedroom community of Fowlerville, MI, and became fascinated with its history. Her interest for this community prompted her to write her first book title, The Fowlerville Chronicles. This book showed how a small group of settlers persevered through so much to build this enclave that is about 90 miles west of Detroit.  Find out more about the book at

Through the Eyes of a Country Editor: The Life and Writings of G.L. Adams, Editor of the Fowlerville Review, 1974-1929 showed the experiences of a young journalist as he chronicled the birth of Fowlerville. He kept a record of the fires, births, deaths, inventions, and so much more. Adams demonstrated why a journalist was and is so very important for any community. This work should appeal to historians and journalists and journalism students.

Cornett had a purpose for both books. Even more important, she had passion. Those are two key ingredients to become a writer of fact or fiction. Interested in her works? Read more at:


Upon receiving recommendation letters, a writing sample and a transcript, MANA will choose an applicant to set up and edit one of the remaining issues. His/her creativity in the layout of this newsletter and the content will determine the finalist.

At the end of the summer, MANA will designate the journalism student whose issue of THE MANA SUNSET is the best. The editor of that issue will receive a paid internship for the 2013-2014 issues of THE MANA SUNSET. For more details, email MANA at


(Submissions to "The MANA Passion for Poetry Poets' Contest" will be chosen to appear in this section of the newsletter)


I am lemonade.

These sour eyes rain
Like lemon juice.
The intensity of each day
Makes my head squeeze.

Lemonade am I.


After a sumptuous Chinese meal
her stomach full and pleasantly
the bill is paid.
The cashier hands off the receipt
on a little black tray:
two peppermints and fortune
Cracked cookie still in plastic,
opened just enough to get out its little
"With every deed you are sowing a
though the harvest you may not


They call us soldiers of fortune,
But we've been
marginally mixed in the madness
of egoism, false pride, and political

I am a poet and a soldier;
I have no fortune.
At this moment I am not sure
whether to bear arms or pen.
7.62 ballpoint is not as piercing as
my Papermate Flex Grip Ultra.

I am lost in this uniform in a
field of green, and camouflaged
from myself.

––Captain Adrian D. Massey
A Soldier's Poetic Response
Book located on MANA's website

In March 2012, MANA used this photo as a prompt to begin the MANA blog story. One writer began the story, and other writers continued it. Here a couple of examples of what was written:

Rex&#39–March 20, 2012 11:47 AM

Off the coast of Florida, George and Allie were basking on their boat. George decided he was going to fish from the back of the boat. Allie noticed that he had gotten up to leave, but decided there was no reason for her to stop him. She simply wasn't worried about anything that he did. After all, she trusted him and was confident that he wouldn't go and hurt himself. Ultimately, she believed him capable of handling anything that he did. Their long-standing relationship, friendship and companionship helped cement this believe into her mind.

nightmare1992––March 21, 2012 3:11 PM

Allie was laying on the front of the boat thinking of what a wonderful life she has with George. Then, she was startled by a noise at the back of the boat.

MANA invites you to read the continuation of this post at

MANA will post a new graphic prompt for a new MANA Blog Story. You can make this an even better continuing story. Keep a look out for the post of Nov. 1.

Want to become a published author/poet? Enter the Contests!

Submissions due: October 25, 2012

Submissions due: October 30, 2012

Go to for details on both writing contests.


Advertise your book throughout this newsletter. Did you like how MANA highlighted different books in this newsletter? Yours can also be highlighted at a reasonable cost. Just submit a jpg of your book cover, a brief description of content, and author's name. And if you know of someone who has a business that can benefit authors, this would be the page to place your business card ad. Advertise any specific service you have that will help writers.

Costs of ads for a book or service:

For one issue: $25
For three issues: $60
For all issues: $100

Upcoming Creative Writing Online Seminar

This online seminar will cover:

* The creative writing process—geting started, developing characters, and developing plots * The discussion of anonymously submitted excerpts seminar participants’ works

* Tips on becoming published


City_________________________________State________Zip Code________________ Country______________________________
Check # submitted____________________

Credit Card—Circle: Amex Discover Master Card VISA
Card Account Number______________________________________________________

CVC Code___________________________
Expiration Date_______________________
Name on Card____________________________________________________________
Address for Card (if different than above address)

E-Mail Address:__________________________________________________________

Registration will be limited. MANA will notify you when registration form and payment are processed. 

Send to:; 2910 E. Eisenhower Pkwy.; Ann Arbor, MI 48108. Send via mail until posting on the MANA site.
Hope to “see” you at the seminar. 

Friday, October 5, 2012

Just in Time For Halloween: 2 Pleasantly Scary Stories For Children

Author Winifred Parker
Winifred Parker, author of 2 Pleasantly Scary Stories For Children, enjoyed telling her grandchildren scary tales just as much as they enjoyed listening to them. 

In fact, her grandson, Vince, also asked her to tell him a story. His requests encouraged Ms. Parker to write a book. And, to the delight of her grandchildren, Vince and his sister Julia, Ms. Parker made them characters in her book. 

Ms Parker's book, 2 Pleasantly Scary Stories For Children is a delightfully-told and illustrated work that children ages 6 to 11 would enjoy. The first story innocently with 8-year-old Julia O'Brien and her 14-year-old brother, VInce, walking their dog, Boomer, to a park not too far from their home. 

While enjoying their walk and meeting up with friends, Julia hears a cry for help. Julia, Vince and others came to the aid of a boy, who was sitting along a path in the woods. He told the children:

Thursday, October 4, 2012

October is National Book Month

Book a trip this month!

Embark on the journey of a lifetime, travel to exotic places, mythical lands and experience adventure beyond imagination. Or escape to another era all together. All without luggage, tickets, a passport or leaving home. All you need is an open mind. And an open book.

You've already discovered the ultimate book lover's destination for great ideas on how to bring the power of reading into your life.

Celebrating National Book Month starts at home. Curl up with your family and a good book, and commemorate America's annual celebration of writers and readers. Here are more ideas that can help you and your family celebrate National Book Month:

Introduce literature into family game night. "Charades" with book titles, "Name That Book," or
   "Win,  Lose, or Draw." It's a little variation on some old favorites.

Family trips to the local library. Everyone in the family must check out at least one book.

• Family Reading Night. Set aside one night a week to read and discuss a book.

Recreate scenes from your favorite books.

• Read to your children. 

Article Source: National Book Foundation

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Banned Books Week Marks 30th Anniversary

Banned Books Week, the American Library Association's (ALA) celebration of the freedom to read, runs from Sept. 30 through Oct. 6. The annual event highlights the value of free and open access to information. Award-winning broadcast journalists Bill Moyers and Judith Davidson Moyers are this year's honorary co-chairs. 

Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. Since then, thousands of individuals and institutions across the United States have participated in Banned Books Week, and it has grown into a premier literary event and a national awareness and advocacy campaign around censorship. More than 11,300 books have been challenged over the past 30 years, according to the ALA.

In honor of the 30th anniversary, the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom established a 50 State Salute to Banned Books Week in coordination with ALA ChaptersThe 50 State Salute consists of videos on how each state celebrates the freedom to read.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Author Describes How Her Life Changed in "One Split Second"

One split second can change your life forever. Author Suzan Bryan Hoppe knew this all to well. As a wife, mother, an insurance agent, and an active member of her church, Suzan's life was anything but boring. 
All was going well until one day, every parents' nightmare occurred: Her son, Danny, was involved in a serious accident that left him with a closed-head injury. Suzan described the tragedy in her non-fiction book, One Split Second. She and her husband, Doug, experienced the stages that families must go through in order to help their child heal. 
If that weren't enough, Suzan supported her husband, Doug, as he encountered lung problems, back surgery and open heart surgery. All the while, Suzan kept up her pace of helping family members, volunteering, attending head injury meetings, and working. 
At one point, she was preparing for a business trip to Indiana and was looking forward to relaxing and being with her friends. Before traveling to Indiana, she attended a trustee meeting at her church one evening. It was there that her head began to ache. Her headache continued when she got home. Suzan described that evening: 

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

"Worldwide Evil and Misery" Remains MANA's Best-Selling Book has published and marketed many books, yet, there's one book that remains MANA's best-seller and that is, Worldwide Evil and Misery: The Legacy of the 13 Satanic Bloodlines by Robin de Ruiter and Fritz A. Springmeir.

Maybe because the book was banned in France. Maybe because it's the government conspiracy theories or the suggestion that the world's richest families are controlling countries behind the scenes. Maybe it's the belief that there is more to Sept. 11, 2001, that hasn't been reported to the public. Maybe it's the authors' explanation for the reasons behind the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Whatever it is, readers continue to order the book.

The book promotes the belief that the visible world leaders are mere puppets directed by an invisible power from behind the scenes. Great nations are simply the operating fronts of behind-the-scenes, vastly ambitious individuals who have become so effectively powerful because of their ability to remain invisible while operating behind the national scenery.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

What We're Reading: "The Glen, A Love Story"

If you're in the mood for mystery, myth and romance, then you'll want to read The Glen, A Love Story, by Marie Coté Sherhart.

The main character, Devon Fournier, is a successful fiction writer who lives in the woods in the Adirondacks with her pets. Devon is forced to face her past as she recovers from the death of her lover, Ron. Sherhart writes:

Having gone through the debilitating and dignity-robbing crisis of Chemo and other medications, Ron had finally given in and let go. For the longer time, no one was able to bring Devon around. 

Not her friends, not her family. She spent each day alone, without human interaction, only her animals to keep her company. After his death, she was in agony for over a year. When it was over for him, it was just starting for Devon.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

"Reading Rainbow" is Back, This Time on an App

Remember Reading Rainbow, the PBS children's program from the 1980s? Now there's an app for that thanks to LeVar Burton, the show's host. 

Burton and Mark Wolfe, his business partner, bought the rights to the name, Reading Rainbow and created an iPad app that has clips from the show, video field trips, and more than 150 books.

Let's Be Kind to Writers and Editors this Month would like to take time out to recognize all the writers and editors who work hard to create books, magazines, newsletters and any other type of written publications.

Why are we doing this, you may ask? Because recently, MANA discovered that September is National Be Kind to Writers and Editors Month. Really? Yes. 

Apparently, the annual observance was started by a writers' group in 1984 in San Antonio, Texas. The purpose was to honor the hard work of editors and writers. After all, they keep us informed and entertained.

So, how do you celebrate National Be Kind to Writers and Editors Month? Read more books? Write a note of thanks? Give them gifts? If so, what do you give them?

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Write Place, Write Time: Lee Woodruff

HootSuite photos by
Lee Woodruff, author of In an Instant, has this hanging in her office where she writes her novels. Many writers find comfortable places either at home, at a cottage or even in public places to work on their manuscripts.

Some writers find that the best place to write is a place with little to no distractions: no mobile phones, no loud talking, no television. This might be a hard place to find, particularly for writers who cannot afford to get away to a cottage or office. No matter where you are, though, you can easily turn off your mobile and television. 

Writing requires intense concentration at times. Having a comfortable place in which you are familiar can start the creative juices to flowing. Soon, you are absorbed in your work, momentarily forgetting about everything else.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Teaching Your Child Honor Through the Alphabet

Watch the TV news or read a newspaper on any given day and you are almost guaranteed to find examples of scandals and unethical behavior in any profession. 

Parents who want to teach their adolescent or teen-age children about values and honesty can take these stories and turn them into teaching opportunities. For younger children, however, parents may want to consider something more age-appropriate, such as the  book, Alphabet of Honor by Ann Warkentin.

This book, available through MANA, can serve as a catalyst for key discussions in families as well as in the classroom. Alphabet of Honor encourages discussion to help parents and teachers instill a child's development of ethics, a clear sense of right and wrong and a sense of honor. Warkentin does this in a unique way: By using the letters of the alphabet.  

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Need a Writing Resource? Consider Process & Voice in the Writing Workshop

Writers have plenty of questions before they begin a writing project:  "How do I get started?" "How do I convey this action to the reader?" "How do I describe a character?"

While most writers know what they want to write about, knowing how to write it is a different story. The anxiety over starting a manuscript can be paralyzing. And, if you're paralyzed in your thinking, the thoughts on how to develop your story will not flow. 

If this sounds like something you've experienced as a writer, you may want to take a moment to read Gregory Shafer's book, Process & Voice in the Writing Workshop. 

Shafer, an English professor, initially wrote this book to help his students who were overwhelmed with books and instruction on the writing process. What Shafer shares is solid advice that is beneficial to all writers. 

Shafer starts by giving a few suggestions to "awaken the writer" before the process begins:

Saturday, July 28, 2012

A Children's Book on Angels

Young children have a curious mind and sometimes they ask us questions that we really have to think long and hard about before we give them an answer.

One topic youngsters often focus on is angels. "Who are they?" they ask. "Are they with us now?" At times, children will say they actually have seen angels and talked to them.

If you have a child or a grandchild who is captivated by angels, then you will want to read, Soar with the Angels: A Children's Book, by Cecilia R. Telles.

By using questions and answers, Telles explores the topic of angels in a way that children would understand. For instance, in answering the question, "What do angels look like?" Telles writes:

Angels are pure spirits. They have no bodies. Sometimes, God allows them to be seen, and they come to earth to help you. God will allow them to turn into any form in order to help you.

Another question the book answers is: "Are angels smart?" Telles writes:
An angel's intelligence is much greater than ours. Since angels are so close to God, they are filled with His divine light, His knowledge, and His wisdom. With a single look, angels can clearly understand everything.
Adults will also enjoy this charming book, with its colorful illustrations of the celestial beings and insightful answers that should satisfy young minds. 

For more information or to preview 
Soar with the Angels: A Children's Book on MANA's website, click HERE.