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The Devil is in the Details

Photo by lilartsy on Pexels.com

The phrase the devil is in the details refers to the specifics of a plan which, while seeming insignificant, may contain hidden problems that threaten its overall feasibility.

The necessity for specifics is obvious when writing works of non-fiction, but it is also an integral part of fiction, especially for world building.

What does this mean for writers? What does it all come down to?

The need for research, research, and more research.

On the whole, efforts spent researching are a good thing. The only negatives being its effect on time.

Researching, in itself, is a time consuming effort. Once decided upon it has the potential for, the almost inevitable, off-topic traveling. Research can, particularly for the less vigilant like myself, cause the researcher to veer from an intended destination.

This is a list of some of the topics I’ve researched: the Garuda, Esala Perahera, Holi, dragons, dryads, the green man, Herne, spotted eagle rays, sharks, NASCAR, Mushussu, gravitational ripples, Mexican spotted owls, and the list goes on.

All of them led to side trips down narrow alleys of previously unknown topics that, in some way, served the story or my curiosity.

To me, one of the most interesting things about research is coming across the unexpected. The discovery might cause me to revise or alter a premise, in order to make a situation or condition feasible, but that’s what so cool. I love incorporating something new into my overall understanding of the world and those in it. There’s always more to learn.

What have you researched? Where has it led you?

Please share,I’m curious.

children's books, creativity, CVI, CVI Literacy, Diane Sheline, diversity, Dr. Christine Roman Lantzy, equal access, learning, Paths to Literacy, picture books, tactile elements, teaching

CVI Literacy Awareness Month

CVI, or cortical visual impairment, is a brain-based visual impairment that is caused due to damage within the brain or the visual pathways.

Literacy is widely defined as “the ability to identify, understand, interpret, create, communicate and compute, using printed and written materials associated with varying contexts.” (UNESCO 2004)http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0013/001362/13

Dr. Christine Roman Lantzy, a leader in the field of CVI assessment and education, has stated that “Literacy begins when they look.” When a child with CVI can visually fixate on a target and interpret it, the child is working to build a visual memory of the target that they can later refer to when the target is presented in different contexts.

As a teacher for the visually impaired and a children’s writer, I love the challenge of creating a meaningful book for a student whether their visual impairment is ocular or brain-based. It is incredibly gratifying to create something that opens the door to literacy for a student.

This link shares creative examples of books created for students with CVI by Diane Sheline, a TVI (teacher for the visually impaired) and a CLVT (certified low vision therapist). https://www.pathstoliteracy.org/adapting-books-and-literacy-students-cvi

There are a few commercially available books that, with adaptation, can be useful for students with CVI, but there could easily be more.

Something I’d like to see is the publishing world getting pro-actively involved in fostering greater equality of access for children with diverse literacy needs.

Below is a YouTube video on one teacher’s effort in modifying a book for a student with CVI.

And this link will take you to an article that talks more about adapting books for children in each of the three phases of CVI. //www.pathstoliteracy.org/blog/adapting-books-children-cvi-all-3-phases.

amwriting, Author/Illustrators, authors, books, bookstores, chapter books, children's books, children's books, children's writing, creativity, illustration, illustrators, libraries, memoir, middle grade books, non-fiction, publishing, reviews, star ratings, support an author, writing journey, YA books

Calling All Readers!

Support authors, illustrators too, they need you.

Just think about it, they’ve poured all of themselves into creating that book you enjoyed. They’ve revised, reworked and fine tuned the words and images you escaped into. They’ve worked hard to get their book(s) published and made available to you.

They deserve a shout out, or a pat on the back, you know they do.

So, that book you’ve just started, or are mid-way through, or are close to finishing? Once you’re finished, use your power as a reader to share your thoughts.

Here are two super easy ways to do just that.

Give it a rating and a review.

It won’t take long. Ratings and reviews can be found on most bookselling sites as well as Goodreads.

You have the power. Books and their creators need your input. It’s a harsh publishing world out there. A little appreciation goes a long way.

Illustrator, Debi Ridpath Ohi says it all!

Your star rating and review can help new readers find and enjoy the book you loved. The more new readers that a book gets, the more likely it is that the writer and illustrator will have opportunities to publish again.

So please, take a few moments to flex your reading power. Help the authors and illustrators you enjoy have the opportunity to create more books. Your imagination will reap the benefits.

The Imaginators by Linda Scott is licensed under CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0

books, books about books, bookshelves, bookstores, bookworm, fantasy genre, HarperVia, Louise Heal Kawai, Sosuke Natsukawa, The Cat Who Saved Books, Yuko Shimizu

Tiger the Tabby

There I was perusing the bookstore shelves, when this cover caught my eye.

I wasn’t planning on buying any books, as my to be read list was already overwhelming. I figured I’d just take a photo to remember the title. After wandering the rest of the store and taking a few more photos of future tbr titles, I circled back and found myself face to cover with the above book. It was meant to come home with me. You can’t argue with that kind of feeling. Well you can, but I didn’t want to, so I carried the book to the register happy to be bringing home a new friend.

No, I didn’t start reading right it away. Well, to be honest I did read a few pages, but that’s all, as I had to finish the book I was in the middle of first. Once I’d finished The Last Cuentista, I eagerly gazed at the cover of The Cat Who Saved Books. The illustration by Yuko Shimuzu made me feel as if I’d somehow already entered the atmosphere of Natsuki Books the secondhand bookstore in the tale.

The story’s protagonist, Rintaro Natsuki, is a hikikomori who has just lost his grandfather and inherited the secondhand bookshop. Soon after, a talking cat who quotes The Little Prince and offers Zen philosophy enters the store requesting his help and Rintaro is drawn into the first of four labyrinths (a reference to the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur) through which he journeys toward his own self-discovery. His grandfather’s words, ‘Books are very powerful’ will serve him on his journey and will, along the way, gain a broader meaning for him and, as was my experience, for the reader who embarks on the journey with Rintaro.

There are a number of poignant passages I’m tempted to type out just to share with you, but I think it’d be better if you find them on your own. Let me know when you do. I’d love to discuss them.

As for me, I’m about 25% through the book for the second time around and Rintaro’s soon to be heading toward the second labyrinth.

Let me know if you take a chance on The Cat Who Saved Books and what you think about it.

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Book Giveaway: WEI TO GO by Lee Miao April 5th

Writing and Illustrating

Lee Y. Miao is the debut author of a middle grade book, WEI TO GO!, illustrated by Penny Weber and published by Clear Fork Publishing on April 5, 2022. Lee has agreed to send a copy to one lucky winner living in the US.

All you have to do to get in the running is to leave a comment. Reblog, tweet, or talk about it on Facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. Just let me know the other things you do to share the good news, so I can put in the right amount of tickets in my basket for you.

Thank you for helping Lee and Penny.

BOOK DESCRIPTION: 

Twelve-year-old Ellie Wei Pettit, a word nerd, hyper-analytical, and directionally challenged, hopes to focus on summer softball. And if she could just lose her sports-whiz brother Kipp, life would be perfect. Until out of…

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