Hello fans! Hope you’re enjoying your weekend. We’re starting today and running through the months of May & June, we’ll be taking a break from Blast From the Past and bringing you a few fresh new goodies!
Here’s the calendar of upcoming posts:
May 7 – June 3: Maycly will be on a Blog Tour featured by Orangeberry Tours. You will be able to stop by the JLB Creatives Blog and catch the weekly stops and dates.
So let’s get started!
Today and tomorrow, May 5 & 6, we’ll be featuring The Plum Tree’s latest creation: YouthTube! A place on the web where children artists can have the work posted, grown-ups present cool kid stuff like books and videos, and so much more!
In celebration of YouthTube, many of us have chipped in and are bringing you child related stories. You’ll find Janet Beasley’s story below
Kids CAN Make a Difference
(The child's name is fictitious, but the story remains a true event.)
Being an author means so much more than just putting words on a page and publishing your books. As an author, I was recently enlightened in a very special way. My novel, Hidden Earth, Volume 1, MAYCLY, Parts 1, 2, and 3, was released in February, 2012. I took pre-release-date orders for the 744-page collector’s edition paperback. Sales went well, and I could not have been happier, or so I thought. I hadn’t really considered what my fans were doing with the autographed copies they received in mid March. Much to my surprise, a rare opportunity to find out presented itself.
It was a normal day in my small town. I headed over to the local diner to have lunch and catch up on the latest news. I grabbed the last remaining seat and joined the already established conversation. A lady who had ordered a pre-release-date copy of MAYCLY was sitting with her friend at one of the other five tables in the restaurant. She waved.
I smiled and said, “How ya doin’?”
She replied with a big grin, “I’m doin’ great, but Johnny’s doin’ better!”
With a polite smile I nodded, all the while wondering who Johnny was. “That’s great!”
There wasn’t much of a pause before she continued. “I gave my copy of MAYCLY to Johnny, my grandson. He loves your book. He’s already halfway through it. He just turned eleven.” She beamed. “AND that was the book he chose to take on vacation with him this week to the nation’s capital. It fit right in his back pack, and he made a point of letting me know he’d be reading it on the plane.”
The only thing I could recall ever hearing about her grandson was that he had read the complete Harry Potter series. Not only that, but he knew everything about every character, place, and animal. As this fact crept its way to the forefront of my memory, my heart skipped a beat. I’m up against Rowling, and this kid’s enjoying my book? The woman continued to tell me that he already knew my characters up to the point he had reached in the story—how old they were, what they wore, how their voices sounded, and so on.
Opting out of a “deer in the headlights” stare, I squealed like a teenager, “That’s amazing!”
Before I could utter another word, the woman said, “Yeah. He came to me and said, ‘Grandma, this book should be on the AR (Accelerated Reading) list.’” She paused and smiled back at what I’m certain was an excited yet puzzled look on my face, then continued. “I’m not sure how you get your books on that list, but I’ll do some research for you.”
“OK.” What else could I say? Finally I closed my gaping mouth and asked, “Do you suppose Johnny would want to write a review for me? I’ll be happy to put it on my website and post it along with the novel where it’s for sale online. I promise only to mention that he’s an 11-year-old from the US.”
She glowed like any proud grandmother would. “I’ll surely ask him.”
In a few days I received an email stating that Johnny would be honored to do the review; he’d never been asked by a real author to do something like that and was thrilled.
This kid has totally stolen my heart, and I’ve never even met him. The numerous hours I spent searching for the right words, constructing sentences, creating a new world, and developing a new language over the last eight years, along with establishing my own style and suffering through sleepless nights as ideas invaded my brain, were well worth the effort.
For several days I forgot about the nerve-wracking moment when I realized that, for this kid at least, I was up against Rowling’s series. I forgot about all the hard work facing me in writing the next five novels in my series and trying to get MAYCLY onto the AR list. All I could think about was...if nothing else happens with this novel series, who cares? It has made a child smile. Speaking from firsthand experience, that’s the greatest success any author could ask for. It is truly an unforgettable moment in my career.
This story and others will be appearing in the next Plum Tree Anthology
~ ~ ~
If you're wondering what Maycly is all about - hop on over to Janet Beasley's Author Page.
Maycly is a three part novel. It is available in both
a 744 collector's edition paperback complete with all three parts, black and white illustrations, 10 maps, family trees, and so much more!
Each part is offered in an ebook, each sold separately, and include color illustrations, and corresponding back matter.
Tell your friends and family!
Be sure to watch for the Author Splash post
featuring Mark Miller
coming Monday May 7, 2012!