|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on November 25, 2013 at 12:35 PM||comments (0)|
Sad to admit, I'm a huge procrastinator when it comes to keeping my blog. It seems that everyday life interfers with my writing in a journalistic style.
Anyway, I've been busy with editing, reading and reviewing and I found my new love... CROSS FIT!!!!
In the past year, I have been working out about 4-5 days a week, building my strength and endurance, as well as toning up and losing pounds. Thanks to my wonderful friend and neighbor who is a personal trainer, I have lost 38 lbs. and 37 inches! My back problems and arthritis have diminished, and I'm feeling great.
Because of this, I have been remiss in writing here, but other than working out and working (at my profession in my home), I have been enjoying my semi-retirement with Art; going out here and there, taking day and short trips, as well as visiting our cousins in MA.
Needless to say, the time has flown by without my knowing it. So, please understand why I haven't written. Nothing much to say that isn't boring anyway!
I do want to mention that due to space constraints I have had to delete several of my reviews for New York Journal of Books and ReaderToReader.com. If there are certain books you'd like to get info on, please go to the sites:
You can peruse my reviews of the reviews of others.
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on May 3, 2013 at 3:50 PM||comments (0)|
By looking at my blog, I'm so surprised to see how long it's been since I've last made an entry.
To say I've been busy is an understatement. Between editing and illustrating assignments, reading for reviews, working on my own writing and spending time with my family, time has slipped by unnoticed.
I have been consistent with posting my reviews, which I hope are read and enjoyed. Because my many reviews are clogging up my site, I've had to delete those I posted from the beginning of 2010, when I started reviewing for New York Journal of Books. I may also be forced to delete the reviews from 2011 and 2012. This is one reason I haven't posted all the reviews I've done for ReaderToReader.com, which I've been doing for about 7 years.
If any of you are interested in a book and want a review, please go to NewYorkJournalofBooks.com or ReaderToReader.com, and they should have reviews of books from the mid-2000s on.
By the way, New York Journal of Books commenced operations in early 2010, which is when I signed on with them, so they basically only have reviews of books released since that date.
Meanwhile, happy reading!
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on April 3, 2012 at 5:25 PM||comments (6)|
Welcome to Kathy Stemke’s Virtual Book Tour
TROUBLE ON EARTH DAY
With Earth Day approaching on April 22, I like to celebrate the earth by welcoming award winning author, Kathy Stemke, to my blog today. Her children’s picture book/resource book, Trouble on Earth Day recently won the Children’s Literary Classic Seal of Approval. In the book a conservation savvy squirrel befriends a homeless bluebird. Will the new friends solve the bird’s trouble? Will there be singing in the forest again?
We share the Earth with over 10,000 species of birds. Birds help our environment in many ways so we should help them survive. They’re beautiful and add their gift of song to our forests. They also help the Earth in the following ways:
They boost tree growth by up to 30% by removing parasites and other damaging insects that stall growth.They're natural gardeners, by transporting seeds gathered in their feet.They also help with pollination, by visiting plants and dispersing the pollen.They eat bugs. Without their voracious appetites our world would be overrun with all manner of creepy, crawling creatures devouring everything living and green.Birds provide us with food.We make pillows, jackets and quilts with bird feathers.Humans are destroying their natural habitat by filling the planet with unsustainable structures that are hostile to our friendly feathered friends.
You can help by giving them a home. Build a tree house. Make one out of milk cartons. Enjoy this activity with family and friends.
An ideal property for bird watching includes a large area with both open space and mixed woodland, islands of natural vegetation, a pond, stream or marsh, old dead trees, berry bushes, cone and nut producing trees, wildflowers, a bird feeding station and a lake or ocean nearby. Most properties don’t provide all this, but anyone with a yard can make changes to attract more birds.
How can Homeowners Provide a Safe Wildlife Habitat?
Grow vegetation that provides food and shelter for a variety of species. Look for plants that provide both food and shelter. This includes fruit and seed-bearing trees and shrubs, native grasses and wildflowers in thick stands. Research what the desirable species eat in the natural environment.Provide structures such as bird houses, nesting platforms.Understand the shelter needs of the species attracting. Plant trees and shrubs of various sizes and species, especially those bearing fruits.Snags are dead trees or branches. Don’t clean everything up in the yard – leave some. Hummingbirds often rest on dead branches, and can easily be viewed. Snags also provide insect hunting places for woodpeckers.Use decals on windows to prevent birds from crashing.Provide water in birdbaths. Kathy’s book has 23 pages of information, comprehension questions, recycling crafts, songs, games, worksheets and activities in the resource part of the book.
Free Earth Day Card for kids:
Free Earth Day Card for adults:
Trouble on Earth Day is available at a discounted price on Kathy's blog: http://educationtipster.blogspot.com and through Amazon, B & N, and other online stores.
Sh Sh Sh Let the Baby Sleep is available through the publisher, http://guardianangelpublishing.com/shshsh.htm and through Amazon, B & N, and other online stores.
Award winning author, Kathy Stemke’s first children’s picture book, Moving Through All Seven Days, was published on Lulu. Her next two picture books, Sh, Sh, Sh Let the Baby Sleep, and Trouble on Earth Day were released in 2011. Both of these books have been awarded the Children’s Literary Classics Seal of Approval.
Being a teacher for 37 years, Kathy understands and loves children. It’s her desire to give parents and teachers exciting books and resources to help them teach their children all the things they need to have a successful life.
Mrs.Stemke offers great teaching tips and children’s book reviews as well as a monthly newsletter titled, MOVEMENT AND RHYTHM, on her blog. http://educationtipster.blogspot.com
Throughout the book tour visitors will be asked to send their best EARTH photo to [email protected] to be displayed on the last day of the tour. A winner will be selected and awarded a $10 gift card.
Kathy StemkeAward Winning Author/Educator/Freelance Writer
Trouble on Earth Day earned the Children's Literary Classics Seal of Approval
Sh Sh Let the Baby Sleep won the Children's Literary Classics Seal of Approval
Sign up for FREE monthly newsletter, Movement and Rhythm: http://educationtipster.blogspot.com/
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on March 26, 2012 at 7:15 PM||comments (0)|
I recently had the pleasure of reading and reviewing Eileen Goudge's The Replacement Wife for ReaderToReader.com.
I also had the privledge of interviewing Eileen on her latest novel, due for release tomorrow, Tuesday, March 27, 2012. You will find her interview after the review along with a recipt Eileen so graciously sent. Enjoy!
The Replacement Wife
by Eileen Goudge
Open Road E-riginal (March 27, 2012)
Thorndike Press (Hardcover - April 6, 2012)
Envision having a handsome successful husband, two well-behaved children, a home you love, and running a business as a matchmaker. Life can’t get better…or so Camille Harte-Constantin thought. That is, until her oncologist informs her her cancer has returned and is now at the Stage IV status.
Filled with dread and anxiety, Camille ponders over her choices. She refuses to suffer through the horrendous turmoil she encountered with her first stem cell transplant and chemo treatment. And, how will she tell her beloved Edward, fourteen-year-old Kyra, and nine-year-old Zach that she is dying? Loving them all beyond passion, in her mind, the best choice is for her to find another wife for Edward; one who will love him and her kids and make sure they are well taken care of.
Camille successfully paired many couples and believes this will be the answer to her problem. She confides in a client named Elise about the situation, asking her to meet her husband and children. Elise is appalled and does not want to remarry after a disastrous divorce, but agrees to see how things pan out.
The main problem is Edward. Incensed Camille would even consider trying to fix him up with another woman when he is in love her; he goes along with theplan on the advice of his good friend, a psychiatrist, who tells him to do as Camille wishes to keep the peace.
Elise visits the Constantin’s summer house on Long Island, and she finds herself welcomed into the family setting. When Camille takes ill and is admitted to the hospital, Elise and Edward stay in the waiting room all night, talking. They find a mutual ground, enjoying each other’s company, but Edward remains angry with Camille and her plan, thinking she is giving up on herself.
As Edward’s anger builds, and he and Camille drift apart. To make matters worse, Elise falls in love with Edward, but he does not share her feelings.
Not long after, Camille’s doctor approaches her about getting into a new clinical trial. Though she is hesitant, she realizes she has nothing to lose. Edward pushes her keep fighting.
The Replacement Wife uses the heartbreaking topic of terminal illness teamed with a woman who loves her family so much she wants to make sure they are loved and taken care of after her passing. Little does she realize she unmasks a horrible plot with disastrous consequences. But, does anyone know what they will do when death comes knocking at their door, and they are concerned about their loved ones? This story takes the reader on an emotional ride dealing with love, betrayal, loss of trust, and the painful realities of life,offering much food for thought.
My Interview with Eileen
How did you research the match-making industry for your book?
I interviewed real-live matchmaker, Janice Spindel, who is one of the most sought-after and successful in thebusiness. She has arranged over 2,000 marriages to date, and not a divorced couple in the mix. That’s a pretty solid track record! In fact, the producersof The Bachelor could take notes from her. One thing I learned: It’s often busy professionals who seek a matchmaker’s services, men and women who don’t have time to date dozens of potential love interests in search of The One. Most have high incomes or are down right wealthy. So I guess the old adage money can’t buy happiness isn’t strictly true. Or not true with many of Janice’s clients, at least.
What are some things you learned about yourself while writing the book?
I learned so much about myself in writing The Replacement Wife. Mostly, for me, it was a journey through the past. As in my past marriages (yeah, okay, I’ve had more than one, but who’s counting?). I was reminded of the need for honesty in a relationship and of being true to yourself. Also, of the importance of not turning a blind eye to cracks in a seemingly solid marriage that could become fissures later on. My fictional story tells of a marriage that appears solid but only because neither husband nor wife is willing to look at it too closely. You have to be willing to look, even if the truth hurts. Because it will hurt even more down the line if you ignore what needs to be done.
Your novel is so full of rich and complex characters; who were some of the characters you related to most or least?
I totally relate to Camille; she is probably the most like me of all the characters in The Replacement Wife. Mainly because she truly believes she can bring about a desired result merely by organizing and orchestrating it to fruition. When, in fact, that kind of thinking can backfire if you don’t watch out (I should know, having To-Do listed myself into a bad place more than once!). She’s also a loving wife and mom, a place I know well as a wife and mother of two who never rode on a plane while my children were growing up that I didn’t worry about what happen to them if the plane crashed.
Where I’m like Angie, Camille’s husband’s unlikely choice, is her love of cooking. I love to cook! Throwing together combinations to create gourmet feasts is what I do to de-stress after a day at the computer. Baking is my favorite thing next to writing. Now, if only I could eat all those mouth-watering baked goods without gaining weight…. hmmm, food for thought for a character in another book? A true fantasy of mine: Being able to eat as much bread as I want without getting a muffin top.
EILEEN'S OPEN-FACE BURRITOWITH JICAMA-AVOCADO SALAD
Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit
2 corn or whole-wheat tortillas
2 -3 teaspoons olive oil, divided
6 to 8 (or more, depending on how thick you want it) heaping tablespoons canned refried beans, divided
8-10 tablespoons shredded Jack cheese, divided
Jarred green chili salsa, to taste (I use Mrs. Renfro’sgreen jalapeno chili salsa, available in many grocery stores)
I cup peeled, cubed jicama
I peeled, cubed avocado
1 small to medium tomatillo, diced
Approximately ¼ cup chopped cilantro (or more, according to your taste)
1 medium tomato, diced
3-4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Salt and red pepper flakes to taste
Jarred or packaged mild or medium-hot tomato salsa (optional)
Place tortillas on baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. Smear olive oil over both sides of both tortillas with hands. Dot one side of each tortilla with half of refried beans and smooth into fairly even layer witha knife. Sprinkle cheese over tops. Bake in oven for 10 minutes or so, until cheese is melted and tortillas are golden brown and crispy around the edges.
Place ingredients for salad in a bowl and toss with lemon juice, salt and red pepper to taste.
Dot green chili sauce over bean-cheese mixture on tortillas, to taste. Spoon half of salad over each tortilla. Spoon a tablespoon or so of tomato salsa on top of salad on each salad, if desired.
Serves two people
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on January 29, 2012 at 3:50 PM||comments (1)|
My Life as a Writer
by Nancy Carty Lepri
My biggest dream has always been to become an author. An avid reader since a toddler, books have been a constant, a friend and an escape. I cannot comprehend living without the written word. To me, reading is second only to breathing. From cereal boxes to fiction, I devour everything and anything I can get grab. I read in the morning while eating breakfast to at night before going to sleep. Some of my favorite genres include contemporary women’s novels and thrillers.
I guess this love of books is what propelled me to become a writer. The fact that I am always talking, thinking and plotting does not take away from this ambition. I have a need to create and to put into words feelings, thoughts and desires.
To me, books should present a diversion from the stresses of everyday, a way to relax and unwind. We are filled with horrors around us. Just pick up a newspaper or turn on the nightly news and realize crime is rampant. Novels can carry one away to another place, to forget, for a short time at least, all that is going on in life. Any type of reading stimulates the brain and give a change of pace. Children require fantasy and play, and adults also need a break from reality.
An author’s career is lonely and often times tedious. Writing requires discipline and perseverance, a thick skin and the knowledge of the difficulty of getting published. For every wanna-be writer, many give up or fail. I kept trying with the burning desire to succeed, and I could not go through life wondering "what if." I needed to try.
My first writing experience started as a freelance reporter for a small, now defunct, tabloid. Almost twenty years ago, the newspaper, “The Tightwad Times,” was introduced to southeastern Massachusetts where I had lived. I submitted two articles for each of the three months the paper was published. The first month, I was assigned to cover a bridal show and write an article on how to prepare an elegant, yet inexpensive wedding. Some other commentaries with the exception of one were written from telephone interviews. Two local Cape Cod newspapers gave me assignments for various topics, and realized this is an excellent way to get one’s feet wet as a writer. I found reporting is gratifying, but recognized this was not the type of writing I wanted to pursue.
My goal was to write fiction. Whether creating short stories or "the great American novel," I enjoy make believe and conjuring up fictitious people and tales about their lives. Though I prefer genres geared to adults, I decided to try crafting a children’s chapter book. I first started working on this in 1995, writing by the seat of my pants. After reading the extremely rough draft, I recognized the text was a mish-mash of information haphazardly thrown together which was too much for children to digest. I broke up the ideas, planning to turn them into a four-book series.
Unfortunately, life took over with the need to shelve the work for a while. After my husband and I moved to North Carolina, I returned to reporting, receiving several assignments for the “Wilmington Magazine” and two national and international food-trade magazines, which proved to be monetarily rewarding.
Nevertheless, I kept returning to the children who wanted to have their story told. The desire to polish and submit the manuscript for publication. I fortunately become a member of a wonderful critique group that offered support as well as excellent suggestions. Tiny Angel, a chapter book geared to ages 8 – 12, was accepted by Guardian Angel Publishing and released in November 2009. The sequel, Tommy's Amigo, is almost completed for submission, and to this, I hope to add two to three more to this series, though all books can stand alone.
Meanwhile, four unfinished adult contemporary novels are calling to me, and I plan to get to them one day. Between writing, reading, reviewing and being with family I enjoy a busy and fulfilling life. I may never become well-known, but my dream is satisified. I encourage anyone who desiring to write to “just do it.”
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on December 29, 2011 at 3:00 PM||comments (2)|
Editing Books Like a Pro:
6 Last Minute Steps Before You Begin Manuscript Submissions
(Excerpt from Editing Like a Pro: Self-Editing for Books and Articles by Karen Cioffi)
So, you think you’re ready to submit your manuscript. Read this first.
You’re at the final stretch. You’ve done everything you could think of to get your manuscript ready for submissions. You’ve used all the self-editing tricks you learned, such as changing the font and reading it again, printing the manuscript out and reading it yet another time, and reading each paragraph backwards. Now, you’re at the finish line. But, before you cross the line, here are 6 last minute steps you should take into consideration
1. Do a Final Self-Edit
By this point, your manuscript should be so polished you need your sunglass to read it. But, give it another once over anyway. You never know.
2. Get your manuscript edited
When you think it’s perfect, have it edited before you start submitting it. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, you think this step is overkill, and it will cost money. You’re right on the second part, it will cost money. But, if you can afford it, it will be money well spent.
No matter how many times you self-edit, there is the chance that you’ll miss something. Writers are just too close to their own work. While you’re reading, your brain is running on ahead, knowing and seeing what should be there, what you intended, whether or not it really is.
If you’ve thought it over and it’s not in your budget, then go over this e-book carefully and be sure to apply everything in it. It would also be a good idea, if you want to be super, duper certain, and if you can afford it, to invest in at least one comprehensive, full-length book on editing. While this e-book has a lot of tips and tricks, it’s always better to be safe, rather than sorry.
3. Create a log line
A log line or pitch line is a one sentence description or your manuscript. This may take a bit of trial and error, but, it’s important to master.
See the bonus article, “The Elevator Pitch for Your Manuscript,” below.
4. Create a synopsis
A synopsis is a short description of your story. Be sure your writing should be tight and focused—leave out the fluff. The content should be, at the very least, self-edited and proofread before sending it off to an agent or publisher. You are trying to grab the reader's attention and let the reader know that you are grammar literate.
Basically, the synopsis should briefly let the editor know what the book is about: the beginning of your story, your main character’s needs or wants, how he strives to reach his goals, the obstacles/conflicts in his way, and how he overcomes the conflicts and moves forward to the final outcome.
I read an interesting article recommending that your synopsis should be created using your detailed outline.
5. Create a query letter or proposal
A query is a sales pitch. It should be three paragraphs and only one page long. The first paragraph quickly and interestingly describes the story; it’s the hook. The second paragraph tells a bit about you, your qualifications for writing the book. And, it’s a good idea to include a bit on how you intend to help market the book. The third paragraph is the conclusion; keep it short.
6. Final Step: Submissions
Okay, your manuscript is polished and shiny, now it’s time to submit. But, hold on . . . check each publisher’s guidelines before you submit.
In fact, don’t just check the guidelines, you need to study them, and follow them implicitly. If a publisher asks for submission by mail only, don’t email your submission. If the word count on an article or story is up to 1000 words, don’t submit a story with 1150 words.
Karen Cioffi is a published author, freelance writer, and marketer, and to start the New Year with a BANG, from January 1 through February 28, 2012, she is offering all her writing and marketing e-books (purchased directly from her site/s using the Paypal SHOPPING CART) for a $1.19 each. And, this will include new titles added within that time period.
For a complete list of the available titles and links to more information:
For a complete list (with brief descriptions of each ebook) go to:
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on June 20, 2011 at 12:12 PM||comments (0)|
I recently had the pleasure of "meeting" Claire Cook. I not only enjoy her writing tremendously, but the fact that we share our love of New England (Massachusetts in particular) gave us a bond.
Claire is a down-to-earth author who just happens to have great literary talent. Reading and reviewing her book Best Staged Plans (the review I wrote for New York Journal of Books is below) proved to be one of the best books I've had the opportunity to read and review.
Claire has the knack for putting the reader into the middle of her story, making the reader feel part of her book. Not only does she involve the reader, but she makes the reader feel as though she knows them well.
I highly recommend reading Claire's books, and I look forward to seeing more of them become movies.
Way to go, Claire...it's been an honor and a priviledge to get to know you.
Best Staged Plans
by Claire Cook
June 7, 2011
Contemporary Women's Fiction
Claire Cook wrote her first novel in her minivan outside her daughter's swim practice. She is now the bestselling author of Seven Year Switch, The Wildwater Walking Club, Summer Blowout, Life's a Beach, Multiple Choice, Must Love Dogs, and Ready to Fall. Claire teaches reinvention and writing workshops and shares tips for both on her website. She lives in Scituate, MA, in an area known as the Irish Riviera, with her husband.
Middle-aged Sandy Sullivan works as a home-stager in the suburbs of Boston. But Sandy is frustrated. She desperately wants to sell the huge home she and her husband Greg bought many years ago. Greg needs to be constantly prodded into making the necessary updates and repairs before their home can be presentable to buyers. And, their gown son, Luke, appears to be a permanent fixture, living in the basement in what he calls his "man cave."
Sandy's best friend, Denise discloses the fact that her boyfriend wants to offer her a job in Atlanta updating a rundown boutique hotel he just purchased. Sandy jumps at the chance to get away, not only to perform a different and exciting assignment, but also to spend time with her married daughter, Shannon, and her new husband Chance, who happen to live there.
Depressed and frustrated, Sandy wonders where the next phase in her life will turn, so she takes advantage of the job offer for a change of scenery. As she leaves home, she informs Greg and Luke not to contact her until the house is ready to be put on the market.
When Sandy meets Josh, Denise's younger boyfriend, she experiences serious doubts about him, both as a mate for Denise and as the owner of the hotel he purchased and hired Sandy to renovate and stage.
Not long after Sandy arrives in Atlanta, Shannon receives a promotion and must go to Boston for training, leaving her alone with her well-mannered Southern son-in-law...a young man that seems to set her teeth on edge.
Struggling through doubts about her marriage and her future, Sandy meets Naomi, a woman who teaches her a few things about life, proving the grass is not always greener on the other side.
Ms. Cook relates Sandy's story in the first person, making the reader privy to all her inner thoughts and expressed needs. Infused with humor and middle-aged angst are some very valuable tips on home staging, showing Ms. Cook's writing only gets better with each new book.
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on June 17, 2011 at 2:30 PM||comments (0)|
If y'all think I've been quiet lately it's because we've been to New England. We first went to Massachusetts, staying with our dear cousins, Lorraine and Randy. The first night we went out to eat in Norfolk with Aunt Connie, cousin Marilyn, and our wonderful nephew, Scott.
We had lots to do, and places and people to see. One destination was to my parents' grave to adorn it with flowers and an angel plaque.
We had lunch with our dear friends, Shirley and Walter Lutz.
Of coure we couldn't leave the Cape without going to the Christmas Tree Shop and driving by our old house...but, where is the house? It's hidden by all the trees!
We also had a great time at our old high school (Norwood High). They have rebuilt the school and invited all the alumnae to visit the old building before tearing it down. It was wonderful seeing old classmates and catching up on 40+ years of news. It was also bittersweet to see new replacing the old.
Art and I had our picture taken showing the facade of the old school...
We met up with some old classmates then also went to Lewis's Cafe and The Old Colonial Cafe after the school tour. What a blast!
Finally, we spent several days (cold and rainy, no less) at our cousins' home on Lake Winnesquam in Laconia, New Hampshire.
We perused many quaint shops, ate at several restaurants (and ate too much) and even braved the weather by spending a few hours on Lorraine and Randy's boat checking out the beautiful lake. Managed to catch a photo of a loon!
Of course, Art was happy because there was a huge bike rally there in Laconia. He was able to add to his collection of Harley Davidson t-shirts. It was not so easy talking him out of another bike though!
It felt good being back "home" and made me want to move back, but then I remembered what the winters are like, so....
We also went by our old childhood homes and took photos (in the rain no less)! I can't believe I lived in one place for 21 years, but why did the present owners of my old home have to asphalt half the front lawn? The new owners of Art's old house put on a big addition. What changes!
Don't you know once we got home, the weather greatly improved in New England, of course! But it was wonderful to get away and see old friends and family.
Now that I'm back and have tackled all that laundry (ugh) and TONS of email, I'm ready to get back to my writing. Needless to say, I've missed you all, and hope you are doing well. I’ll try not to lurk so much in the future, but I can’t promise. <G>
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on April 30, 2011 at 5:42 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on April 11, 2011 at 2:34 PM||comments (5)|
Read my review of Dr. Richard Mabry's latest medical thriller,
on my New York Journal of Books review page.
Leave a comment on this blog as to why you would like this book.
The most convincing answer will win.
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on April 1, 2011 at 3:36 PM||comments (0)|
My goodness, it's hard to believe it's been so long since I last posted a comment here. That's what being busy does...
Art and I are feeling great sorrow at the passing of his wonderful uncle, Tony Fruci, who left our world, Tuesday, March 29. He was the sweetest, dearest man I know, and he loved his family unconditionally. My heart goes out to his sweet wife, Auntie Connie, as well as the rest of the family... daughters, Marilyn and Lorraine Eakin, who are like sisters to me, as well as Lorraine's hubby, Randy and their son, Scott.
Unc, I know you're now with our dear departed Cheryl, as well as my wonderful mom and dad, who thought the world of you.
Know that you will be sorely missed, but we'll all be together in Heaven one day. Rest in peace, dear heart...
Since I last posted here, I've been busy working on my final edits for the second children's book in my series Tommy's Amigo. I haven't submitted this yet for I want to go over one more time.
I have also completed a picture book titled Squiggles' New Home, which I may revamp, and another children's book based on my wonderful feline, Thomas Joseph. I haven't decided if I want to format this as a picture book or a middle-reader, and I'm still in the very rough stage with it now. I'll figure it out, I guess.
I've also been busy reading and writing reviews for ReaderToReader.com, which you can catch on their site, as well as New York Journal of Books. You can read my reviews for them here on my web page.
Art and I were in Florida in Jan. and when we got back he landed in the dentist's office with a nasty infected tooth, which unfortunately took the wind out of his sails. Thanks to heavy-duty antibiotics, he's just now getting back to himself.So, between, writing, reading and reviewing, and running around with Art, I've been keeping busy.
Dani has also been in our lives a lot and we're so greatly blessed to have such a wonderful daughter. She's doing wonderfully in her job and enjoys it enormously.
It's been a horrendous winter, and I wonder how I ever managed to live all those years in Massachusetts! I hate the cold and hate the snow, and Mother Nature sure has been crazy this year, but my lilacs are blooming as well as the trees and shrubs.
Give me a few months, and I'll be lamenting about the heat!
Meanwhile, I hope no one thinks I've forgotten about them by being so lax in writing this blog. It's been great to connect with all my friends and colleagues through email and Facebook and I'll try to write her more often.
Wishing you all a joyous spring!
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on December 24, 2010 at 2:34 PM||comments (0)|
Wishing all my dear friends and colleagues a blessed Christmas
and a happy, healthy 2011
This awesome nativity set was made by my wonderful mom, Emily Carty in 1957.
Tommy waiting for Santa...sleeping on the lovely afghan mom made in 1971.
(She even made several counted cross-stitch ornaments for the tree.
She was one amazing lady! Love you and miss you, Mom)
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on December 17, 2010 at 5:12 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on December 8, 2010 at 1:58 PM||comments (1)|
Well, it's day 3 of my book tour and I'm pleased with how things are going. This has been a lot of work, but it's been a labor of love too. Check out the reviews, my interviews and comments on my Tiny Angel page and please feel free to leave a comment too if you'd like!
I want to thank Cheryl Malandrinos of Pump Up Your Book (www.pumpupyourbook.com) for all her hard work. She is amazing, and anyone who would like to promote and market their book should talk to her. She gives 150% and I highly recommend her services.
Way to go, Cheryl!
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on November 17, 2010 at 3:36 PM||comments (1)|
Just want to let you know that beginning December 6 and running through December 17, I will be having a VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR for Tiny Angel.
If you click on to the link below, it will give you more information and you can get on to the different sites offering reviews, comments and giveaways!
Here is the link to the site. I hope you'll take a look and offer some feedback.
Monday, December 6
Guest blogging at Lori’s Reading Corner
Tuesday, December 7
Guest blogging and giveaway at Acting Balanced
Book reviewed at Lynn’s Corner
Wednesday, December 8
Book reviewed at Acting Balanced
Thursday, December 9
Book reviewed and giveaway at I Am A Reader, Not A Writer
Friday, December 10
Book spotlighted at Book Tours and More
Monday, December 13
Author interviewed at Pump Up Your Book!
Tuesday, December 14
Book reviewed and giveaway at Ellis
Book reviewed at Giving Reading a Chance
Wednesday, December 15
Book reviewed and giveaway at Chrissy’s World of Books
Thursday, December 16
Book reviewed at 4 the Love of Books
Friday, December 17
Guest blogging at The Children’s and Teens’ Book Connection
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on November 13, 2010 at 4:41 PM||comments (0)|
I sure wish there was a store that sold extra hours in the day, for I would be their biggest customer! Cannot believe that it is almost mid-November already. Phew!
Art and I took a few days off to take a trip to "Mayberry RFD" otherwise known at Mt. Airy, NC, about a three hour drive from home. What a delightful time we had, considering it rained for two days. It least it was warm. We went through the whole town, took pictures and talked to the locals. I even found an old-fashioned soda fountain where I was able to have a chocolate ice cream soda...something North Carolinians don't really know of, but those from New England sure do. I was in "hog heaven" and enjoyed every drop. Art loved Aunt Bee's Restaurant and had a heaping plate of barbecue, which is something all North Carolinians love.
Below is a photo of Art goofing off in Floyd's Barber Shop as well as one of me "talking" to Sheriff Andy in the squad car!
We were planning to check out the granite quarry and climb Pilot Mountain while we were there, but unfortunately the weather did not cooperate, so we ended up leaving before we planned to. Went to Hickory, but it was too rainy to do anything there but shop and there was nothing we needed.
Deciding to head home a day early, we stopped outside Winston Salem to visit Art's Aunt Anna who is in a nursing home there. We hadn't seen her in more than ten years, so it was nice to be able to have a visit with her if only for a few hours.
Now for my big news....
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on October 5, 2010 at 4:28 PM||comments (0)|
Below is the review of my dear friend and colleague, Cheryl Malandrino's new release.
by Cheryl C. Malandrinos
illustrated by Eugene Ruble
(Guardian Angel Publishing, August 2010)
Little Shepherd is a delightful story of thebirth of Christ, geared for the four- to eight-year-old reader, but is a taleto be enjoyed by those of any age.
The story of Jesus’ birth is toldthrough the eyes of Obed, a five-year-old shepherd boy who just received hisfirst flock of sheep to tend. Conscientious about his new duties, Obed becomesfearful after the evening skies brighten by a group of angels who arrive tospread the good news.
Obed notices his father displays no fear,and learning they must go to Bethlehem, the boy worries about the flock, but obeyshis elder. Hand in hand, they start their journey, and along the way, Obedquestions why they have left their sheep, concern of them utmost in his mind.
Arriving at a stable, Obed finds afather and mother watching over their baby, much as he guards his sheep. Hearingwolves howling in the distance makes Obed grow more worried about the animals.After paying homage to the baby, they head back to the fields, singing praisesand giving thanks to God.
Obed wonders why his father so happy andcoming upon his flock, he is astounded they are gathered together—not a onemissing—even though the wolves are nearby. Seeing his charges are safe, Obedrealizes it is indeed a magical night.
Though a wonderful Christmas story, thisbook will be enjoyed year round. Through a child’s narration, this tale is sureto help little ones relate more so to this celebrated event. The combination of Mr. Ruble’s colorfulillustrations and Ms. Malandrinos’ well-written prose unite this story into abook children of all ages will love and want to read repeatedly.
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on September 23, 2010 at 2:56 PM||comments (1)|
Do you love to read? Do your friends ask you what you thought of a certain book, only to tell you after you share your ideas of it with them that you should write reviews? Did you ever wonder what it takes to be a book reviewer and how to get started? Well, Ms. Calvani and Ms. Edwards provide everything you need to know through their concise and detailed guide on what makes a great review and how to write one that will make others take notice.
An excellent vehicle, this book supplies both the beginner and seasoned reviewers with tips on how to create a professional and objective review. Different chapters teach how to read critically, distinguish different type of reviews, how to rate the books you are reviewing, and how to write outstanding reviews. Also described are the legalities of reviewing, dealing with ethics, and how to discern the difference between a critique, a review, and a book report. You will learn how to publish reviews on different online sites, create your own review site, and even how to make money writing reviews.
Actual reviews are analyzed, showing what works and what does not, depicting how a mediocre review can be rewritten to be more professional. Different review genres are discussed as well as differences between reader and reviewer reviews.
A key ingredient stressed is how a reviewer who writes only positive reviews can kill their credibility. Reviews are the reviewer’s opinion only, and this guide teaches how negative reviews should be handled with decorum and still show respect to the author.
Reader resources with how and where to post reviews and how to compile a press release are also supplied, answering any question a reviewer could possibly have.
The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing is a valuable resource not only for wannabe reviewers, but also for those who have been penning reviews for a long time. This also is a definite aid to authors, publishers, publicists, booksellers and librarians.
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on September 17, 2010 at 2:34 PM||comments (0)|
I'm back, and here it is September 17! I can't believe that a year-and-a-half ago today I lost my wonderful mom, Emily Carty. Some days it feels like it was just yesterday and other days it feels like she's been gone forever. But, though she's no longer a physical presence in my life, I feel her spirit (any my dad's too) all around me. I was so blessed to have such wonderful parents. The last year of Mom's life, we became very close. She was my best friend and offered me total and unconditional love. She was the one who pushed me to submit my book Tiny Angel for publication, and because of her pushing, it was accepted and published. I had the honor of dedicating the book to her and though she knew it was going to be released, she did not live to see it happen. I'm sure, though, she's up in Heaven having all her friends reading it. She so loved to brag about me! But, that's moms and she was the best!
Meanwhile, I've been very busy these past few days. I may have mentioned I finished my first draft of my sequel to Tiny Angel. I've tentatively titled it Tommy's Angel, but that's subject to change. I'm excited it's done, but now I have to do the proofing, editing and rewrites, which can be just as tiresome as the writing.
I also got new office furniture, so now I have a chance to spread out and work with a lot of space. Above is a photo of my new office. Isn't it nice? I have Art to thank for this, as he's the one who saw it and suggested it after my constant complaining about not having enough room with my small office hutch! Me complain???
Anyway, it took a while to set up this new office, clean out the old cabinet as well as my closet. However did I manage to accrue so much stuff? I spent two days just cleaning out my closet and pitching unnecessary junk. It sure piles up. I also have TONS of books that I got for review, which I will donate and/or pass on to my reader friends.
In the midst of all this, I got a notice from my back that beginning Oct. 1, they'll no longer utilize MS Money, which is a program I have been using for years! Typical, huh? Just when I get used to something, they decide to change it! Ugh! So off I went to Best Buy and got Quicken, which they recommended to use instead. They also said coversion from Money to Quicken was a "snap!" Yeah, right! Maybe for techo geniuses, but not for a technodummy like me! I tried it and of course, no luck. I ended up installing and uninstalling the darn program about four times before I got totally frustrated and clicked on their support website. After spending three hours...yeah, I'm not kidding, with a foreigner, who understood English very well I may add, it turned out that my Money program (Money Plus Deluxe, which I upgraded last July as a matter of fact, and got a notice last Sept, that they were not longer going to make Money... another typical, huh?) was the cause of the problem. I guess I shouldn't have upgraded, but how did I know they were going to stop making it? ARGH!
So, to make a long story short, something Art says I have a hard time doing, I had to uninstall Money Plus and install a "trial" of Money 2008. Thankfully I didn't lose all my files, but I had back them up on my trusty flashdrive. Still with doing that, I needed the tech's help to get into my computer and undo glitches. That's done and taken care of. Now I have the fun (?) task of learning this program. Geesh....
Anyway, that's what's been going on around here. I need a vacation and think I'll take a trip to the coast. Anyone want to join me...um, with Art too??? Can't leave him behind! The more the merrier.
In the meantime, cheers, my friends. Stay well and enjoy life..it's too short!
|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on September 8, 2010 at 6:39 PM||comments (2)|
I'm back again after a few weeks...weeks that have been busy, I'm happy to say! Since my last post around the time of my birthday, I have been feverishly working on my sequel to "Tiny Angel." I have to admit too, that I've managed to sneak in a few games of Bejeweled...my saving grace, though it can get pretty frustrating as well as hectic.
This past Saturday Art and I celebrated our 39th anniversary! Imagine that! Our wonderful daughter, Danielle, come to visit in the morning and gave us a restaurant gift certificate and beautiful card. After a great visit and many hugs, she headed home to her "beloved" housework...I hope you know I'm kidding. Who loves housework?
Art and I went out to dinner, hoping to try an Italian restaurant our neighbors raved about, but first we went to a couple of furniture stores. Since we moved here and downsized from our old house with my magnificent, huge office, I've been having a hard time with my tiny desk. I've been feeling so constrained, so, Art suggested we look for some nice office furniture that would give me more room to spread out, as well as offer more storage space. Saw a few things I liked and put them on my "maybe" list.
We arrived at the restaurant about the time they were due to open, only to find out they were closed in observence of the Labor Day weekend! Ugh. Then we headed up the main road and ended up at the Outback. What a mistake. I ordered a filet and shrimp with garlic mashed potatoes. I got a filet that was mostly fat, and three tiny shrimp, and they had run out of the garlic mashed potatoes. Oh well... But, they did give us a dessert in honor of our anniversary and who can pass up dessert? The main thing was that we were together and enjoyed each other's company.
On Monday I found the office furniture I love and ordered it. It has seven pieces! 7, can you believe that? It is like a wall unit with three base cabinets; one with open shelves, one that has doors and a pull-out keyboard drawer; and the other has two lateral file drawers, which will be great for all the files I have. The top units consist of two open shelves and one with shelves behind doors. There is also a free-standing writing desk that can go against the open shef unit or be placed by itself. And it's all in a beautiful cherry wood. I can't wait to get it. Think of all the room I'll have for all my materials! But, like most furniture places, they can't guarantee deliverey, so I could get it anywhere from tomorrow till next Thurs. meaning I'll have to be home, which isn't that hard a deal.
Meanwhile, I've been working hard and am delighted to say, I finished my sequel to "Tiny Angel" which I've tentatively titled "Tommy's Angel" though that's subject to change if I can come up with a better title. I'm open to suggestions!
Now, I have the fun of reading over it, handling rewrites and edits, and polishing it up for submission. But the worst is done, thank God. With some luck and a lot of prayers it will be published soon, but of course, I will alert everyone when that happens!
Thanks for dropping in and hope to "talk" soon.