Science for the Public and more…

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Janet F. Smart lives in picturesque West Virginia. She is the mother of three grown boys. She enjoys writing for children, bringing her thoughts, dreams and imagination to life. When not outside enjoying nature, she sits at her writing desk, her inner child flowing onto the paper. A flicker of a childhood memory was the inspiration for this novel.

 

After his dad dies in an accident at work, twelve-year-old Teddy Haynes and his mom come back to live with family in rural West Virginia. They hope to start over, but some people say the Russians are going to blow up the United States. How can they start over, if the world comes to an end?

He finds his life filled with talk of bomb shelters, a cat and dog that don’t get along, clinging two-year-old twin nephews and a pretty girl he’s too shy to talk to. To help cope with their fears, Teddy and his friends convert an old cave in the woods into a bomb shelter. Will they be able to work together and pull through the tense-filled months during the Cuban Missile Crisis in the fall of 1962? And will Teddy be able to overcome his grief from the loss of his dad?

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C. M. Savage began writing at a young age. She wrote and illustrated her first book when she was in second grade and continued to write off and on through college. After traveling, she enjoyed working with birds of prey, mammals and endangered Hawaiian birds. She is a second degree black belt in Taekwondo, enjoys crafting and volunteers in the library at her children’s school. She currently lives on Maui with her husband and two daughters on their small organic farm. The Gardenia Curse is her debut novel.

Thirteen-year-old Eva Thomas finds herself in a life threatening mystery when her dreams become real. Night after night, she is transported to Dreamland, where an evil being, the Shadow, wants her dead. Exhausted from her troubled sleep, Eva stumbles through her days in a new town where her grandmother is known as an eccentric and in a new school where a bully has decided Eva needs to be put in her place. Can Eva save herself and her dreams before it’s too late?

Lizzie Ross grew up in Tulsa, and has lived and taught in Africa, the UK, and New York City, where she lives. Her first book, Kenning Magic, is available on Amazon, and at Lizzie Ross’s website: LizzieRossWriter.com
Kenning Magic, a new novel by Lizzie Ross, tells the story of Noni, who lives in a world where everyone, including infants, can cast magical spells. Everyone, that is, but Noni herself. But she alone can read; she has what her late mother called the ‘Old Knowing’, and this ability is a secret Noni must keep from everyone, including her best friend, Twig.
When magicians from an enemy country steal everyone’s Magic, Noni knows that she is the only one who can help save them. She must use the ‘Old Knowing’ to find the Book of Spells. Only the Book will enable her countrymen to re-learn Magic and have a fighting chance. Meanwhile, dragons have escaped from the ‘Hold’ and are burning dwellings and eating anything that moves. The enemy mages have learned of the Book of Spells and are also searching for it. Noni, with Twig at her side, must use her wits and whatever luck that crosses her path to reach the Book before it’s too late.

Speaking Tips for Writers

  1. Make your introduction brief. Like less than 30 seconds. If someone introduces you, skip the introduction completely, because you were just introduced. There’s nothing that stalls a presentation or performance more than a two or three minute monologue before getting into the “meat” of things.
  2. Use the podium. If there is a podium or table, use it to hold your materials. Sometimes we shake when we read (even if we’re not nervous, though especially if we are), and we shake more if we become conscious of our own shaking.
  3. Use the microphone. If there’s a mic, use it. Sure your voice might carry without one, or you may have to fiddle with it a moment to adjust for your height, but people in the back can hear better when your voice is amplified. Trust me on this.
  4. Encourage audience interaction. When performing poetry, this means you can allow an audience to clap if they choose to clap. When giving a presentation, let the audience know whether it’s appropriate to ask questions as you present or if you’ll have a Q&A after the presentation is complete. Then, make sure there is a Q&A.
  5. Act confident. You might be terrified, but try not to let it show on the outside. To accomplish this, stand tall. Speak with conviction. Make eye contact. Most importantly, don’t apologize. While you may know when you’re making mistakes in front of an audience, many of them are probably unaware.
  6. Be organized. If you’re giving a presentation, have talking points ready to go before the presentation. If you’re reading poems (or from a fiction/nonfiction book), have your selections planned out before you hit the stage. The audience will be uncomfortable and frustrated if you spend time paging through your book to find the correct passage.Organization goes a long way in how the audience perceives you and how you perceive yourself.
  7. Slow down. This is an important tip, because many people automatically start talking fast, especially if they know they’re on the clock. I try to remember to breathe and pause in appropriate places. Nothing awkward, just long enough to allow my audience to digest what I just said. A pregnant pause may be useful but use sparingly.
  8. Make personal, add humor. Be careful with humor. Sometimes your jokes will not be personal. Sometimes your personal stories will not be humorous. Sometimes the stars will align and both will coincide, and that’s when you’ll engage your audience the most. While I advise humor and personal anecdotes, make sure they have context in your presentation.
  9. Stop before you’re asked to leave. There’s something to the thought of leaving the audience wanting more. Know your time. Wear a watch. And end a little early (like a minute or two). If the audience feels like the presentation or performance went by fast, they’ll attribute it to your great speaking skills. Don’t drone on…
  10. Provide next steps and/or a conclusion. Depending on why you’re speaking, you should have some kind of suggestion for your audience. Maybe it’s to buy your chapbook or applaud the hosts. Maybe it’s to put some of your advice into action immediately. If you’re presenting a topic, it’s a good idea to sum up all the main points before sending your audience back out into the world.

One bonus tip: Provide handouts. Whether you’re reading poetry or leading a workshop on business management, handouts are a great way to let your audience have something tangible to take away with them. Your handouts should be helpful and relevant. They should also include your name and contact information, including your website or blog url. (Yes, it’s a sneaky good marketing tool.)

Just remember, speaking is an activity. Most activities are hard to master unless you practice. So get out there and speak and realize that you’re going to make mistakes early on. That’s part of the learning process. Just dust yourself off and get out there again.

 

Our next author to be on the Author TakeOver Event is…Fran Orenstein
 
Fran Orenstein, Ed.D., published author and poet, also edits both poetry and prose. She wrote her first poem at age eight and has written and published academically and professionally since then. This included working as a magazine editor and writer, writing political speeches and material for state government and writing newsletters for various organizations. Her author credits include eleven published books, including middle grade novels, young adult novels, a contemporary adult novel and two adult mysteries, plus a book of poetry, and…there are more books waiting in the wings. Visit Fran’s World at http://www.franorenstein.com for more information.
Her academic credentials are B.A. in Early Childhood Education from CUNY’s Brooklyn College; M.Ed. in Counseling Psych from The College of NJ; and, Ed.D. in Child & Youth Studies from Nova Southeastern University.
 
She has authored many books for children and young adults:
Shadow Boy Mystery Series: Mystery under Third Base – Book 1, Mystery of the Green Goblin – Book 2, Mystery of the Stolen Painting – Book 3, Mystery in Gram’s Attic – Book 4.
Also by Fran Orenstein: The Spice Trader’s Daughter; The Calling of the Flute; Fat Girls from Outer Space; Fat Girls from Outer Space; a Graphic Novel

Now on YouTube…

Saguaro Books, LLC  2017 Book Catalog now on YouTube:
https://youtu.be/hV2ITyZOeXs

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