Readers; important dates for your diary.

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Are you planning to buy more books this year, or do you simply tend to grab one when it catches your eye?

Whichever you do, it is worth considering when to buy your books because, at certain times, authors and publishers run special promotions.

These promotions can include discounts, new releases, posting of excerpts or sample chapters, reveals of covers and a whole host of exciting stuff not usually seen at other times.

Electric Eclectic suggest the following are dates worth putting into your diary and even setting an alarm to jog your memory. (We’ll post further dates for your diary later in the year.)

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March 5

Marked in over 100 countries across the globe, World Book Day is a UNESCO initiative which aims to celebrate books and reading, especially among younger members of our societies. In the UK and Ireland, National Book Tokens are given to children so they can find books of their own choice, something to unlock the power of their minds in a way the increasing prevalence of digital screens may not provide.

For what it’s worth, World Book Day falls on the same date every year as St David’s Day, so, if you read a Welsh book on the first day of March every year, you are doing justice to two great causes!

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March 21

Poetry reaffirms our common humanity in revealing everybody in the world shares the same questions and feelings. Poetry is the mainstay of oral tradition and, over centuries, can communicate the innermost values of diverse cultures.

In celebrating World Poetry Day, March 21, UNESCO recognizes the unique ability of poetry to capture the creative spirit of the human mind.

One of the main objectives of the Day is to support linguistic diversity through poetic expression and to offer endangered languages the opportunity to be heard within their communities.

The observance of World Poetry Day also encourages the oral tradition of poetry recitals, to promote the teaching of poetry, to restore a dialogue between poetry and other arts such as theatre, dance, music and painting, and to support small publishers and create an attractive image of poetry in the media, so the art of poetry will no longer be considered an outdated form of art, but one which enables society as a whole to regain and assert its identity.

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April 1 to May 10

National Pet Month is back, and it is even better than ever, attracting thousands of animal lovers to celebrate the value of pet ownership. Every year National Pet Month brings together animal welfare charities, professional bodies, businesses, and schools to promote good pet ownership, raise funds for good causes and have fun.

We love to shout about the rewards and benefits of owning a pet whilst encouraging responsibility, increasing awareness of pet care specialists, and promoting the value of assistance and companion animals.

What has this, you may ask, got to do with books. The answer is simple, writers and authors love their pets too, so to share stories and images of them while talking a bout their books is something many do. Check out social during these dates.

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April 23

World Book and Copyright Day is a celebration to promote the enjoyment of books and reading. Each year, on 23 April, worldwide celebrations take place to recognise the magical power of books; a link between the past and the future, a bridge between generations and across cultures.

23 April is a symbolic date in world literature. It is the date on which several prominent authors, William Shakespeare, Miguel Cervantes and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega died. It is the natural choice for UNESCO’s General Conference, first held in Paris in 1995, to pay a worldwide tribute to books and authors, and to encouraging everyone to access books, which are the most beautiful invention for sharing ideas beyond the boundaries of humanity, space and time, as well as being a most powerful force of poverty eradication and peacebuilding.

By championing books and copyright, UNESCO stands up for creativity, diversity and equal access to knowledge. With active involvement of stakeholders: authors, publishers, teachers, librarians, public and private institutions, humanitarian NGOs and the mass media, and all those who feel motivated to work together in this world celebration of books and authors, World Book and Copyright Day has become a platform to rally together millions of people all around the world.

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May 1 to May 31

National Share A Story Month 2020

Celebrate the Power of Storytelling with National Share-a-Story Month

The Federation of Children’s Book Groups is an organisation started in the 1960s. It was created in response to parents’ desires to learn more about children’s books and how to encourage their own children to read more.

Children’s Book Groups were created in throughout the UK, the Federation served to link them together. The Federation is responsible for several initiatives including National Share-a-Story Month.

The celebration takes place annually throughout the month of May. It has proved to be an excellent way to celebrate the power of storytelling. Children and stories are brought together in a variety of events which take place across the UK.

Each year the event has a general theme, for 2020 it is Folk tales, fairy lore, figments, phantoms, dragons, serpents, storms at sea.

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Browse Electric Eclectic’s books, for adults and children of all ages. You can find them on our website at http://bit.ly/visitEEbooks

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Where did Wally Twitchett come from?

The following article is from a wonderful author whom I am lucky to count amongst my friends.

Julia Blake is warm-hearted, funny and straight-talking; her words dance across the page, keeping you entertainingly captivated from start to finish.

In this guest post for Electric Eclectic, Julia addresses a question many authors are asked.

Author Julia Blake

One of the questions readers ask me the most is, where do you get your ideas from? The honest answer is most of the time I have absolutely no idea. I’ll be going about my daily life and suddenly a scene, or a name, or a scrap of dialogue will float into my brain. For a few days, weeks, months or even years, it will simply sit there, putting out little tendrils of ideas that twist and grow and take root in my imagination, until suddenly, bam, I have a complete plot in my head, fully formed, as if from nowhere.

Occasionally though, I can pinpoint the exact moment when a book was conceived and can say “there, that was when it all started.” It was like that for The Forest ~ a tale of old magic ~ my most popular book to date. Over a decade ago I was at a family party. It was one of those parties where ages ranged from babes in arms up to great-grandfathers ensconced in the corner with a glass of sherry. It was getting late, the party was winding down, parents of very young children had taken them home and I was sitting on a chair sharing the dregs of a bottle of wine with my brother. Behind us, a group of elderly gentlemen were reminiscing about the good old days. Only half-listening, my attention was abruptly grabbed when one of them came out with the best line ever. Leaning towards the other gents, he enquired…

“Whatever happened, to old Wally Twitchett?”

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Wally Twitchett? What an amazing name. My imagination started humming. By the time I went to bed that night I could “see” Wally in my mind right down to his patched but clean clothes, his beak of a nose and protruding Adam’s apple. I could imagine him rattling around the village where he lived on his old boneshaker bike, because, of course, he had to live in a village. An old, isolated, insular village in a forgotten corner of Britain. A village that appears suspended in time and peopled with quirky characters all with names as odd and memorable as Wally’s. Maybe, the residents of this village never leave, ever. My, that is interesting. Why do they never leave? Because the village is slap bang next to a big old creepy forest with something evil at its core that’s placed a curse on the village and its people. Ooh, a curse! I love it. What type of curse? And so on…

You can see from this process how one simple name can spark a chain reaction in an author’s brain, where one idea tumbles onto the next and the next and so on until the whole plot lies before you. Rather like those domino effects where one tap sends the first domino falling onto the next and it’s only when the whole lot has fallen the picture is revealed.

I wrote the book.

Over a decade later, I published it.

To my joy, others loved the village and its characters as much as I did, and even though Wally ended up a minor character, he still finally found his voice in my story.

A sweet postscript to this story happened last year. I work part-time for a mattress and bed retailer and was one day putting through an order for a lovely young girl and her husband. They wanted to finance the purchase so in the course of completing the form I asked her for her maiden name. Twitchett, she replied.

I stared at her in disbelief.

“No relation to Wally Twitchett?” I tentatively enquired.

“Oh yes,” she replied, he was my great-uncle.

I couldn’t help the smile of disbelief that spread over my face and explained to her the significance of that name. Intrigued, she ordered the book there and then, wanting to share it with the rest of her family. It is touching to think that even though the real Wally Twitchett died childless many years ago, some small part of him will live on forever in The Forest.

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“I met a man made of leaves, with roots for hair, who looked at me with eyes that burnt like fire.”

An impenetrable forest that denies entry to all but a select few. A strange and isolated village, whose residents never leave. A curse that reappears every generation, leaving death and despair in its wake.

What is lurking at the heart of the Forest?

When the White Hind of legend is seen, the villagers know three of its young people will be left dead, victims of a triangle of love, murder and suicide. This time, Sally, Jack and Reuben have been selected, and it’s their turn to be tormented by long-buried jealousies, aroused by the dark entity existing within its shadowy glades. Only by confronting the Forest’s secrets, can they hope to break the curse and change their destinies – if they have the courage.

Keeper of secrets. Taker of souls. Defender of innocence. Existing on the very edge of believing, there is the Forest.

This is its story


Love reading, find Electric Eclectic books on Amazon’s @open24, the store for bookworms, readers and writers.

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Writing for Healing

In 2013, I received the most devastating news anyone could ever hear. I was diagnosed with cancer. More specifically, I had AML, a type of leukaemia, a blood cancer.

I was 37 years old.

The next eight months of my life are still a blur in my memories. Chemotherapy and everything that goes along with the treatment of cancer is incredibly stressful on one’s body and spirit. Many of the drugs cause damage to cells other than cancer cells, and this takes its toll. During this treatment, and for a long time afterwards, I was unable to work.

I published my first book in early 2012, a novel I began writing while still in high school. After recovering from cancer, I was still unable to work outside the home, and so I returned to my love of writing to keep my mind occupied.

Just like reading, writing can be very cathartic. When you read a book, you step into the world of the author, meeting new characters and falling in love, rejoicing, and grieving with them as they journey through their lives. Writing is also a good way to escape your world while you create another one. Your characters become your children, in a sense, as you give birth to them and nurture them.

But writing for healing doesn’t have to involve a novel. Even keeping simple journal entries each day can help you express feelings you can’t quite get a grip on. Or short stories where you explore dreams and desires that you can never experience in real life can provide you with an outlet for emotions. You can write as much or as little as you want, without putting any specific goals on yourself.

So, how do you begin to write for healing?

Maybe you think you’re not creative or have no idea for starting something like this. My advice to you would be to start with your dreams. Keep a pad of paper and a pen (or a notes app on your phone if you’re more technologically savvy) next to your bed. As soon as you wake up in the morning, jot down what you can remember from your dreams. Many people might say they don’t remember their dreams, but if you do this when you first wake up, you might be surprised what you can recall.

The idea for my Undead Unit series actually stemmed from a dream. It was like a spark lit in a dark cavern, and I could see my characters in vivid colour. I had a plan formed and a sense of where the characters (in general) might go.

Now, 6 years later, I have 6 books wrapped around these characters, with more to come! 51S87abp4xL._SY346_

Once you have several dreams in your notes, go over them when you have time and see if there’s anything you can make a story about. Don’t worry about punctuation and grammar (unless you’re really picky like I am), just start to get the bare bones down. Any refining, should you choose to do so, can come later. Just sit down and let the words flow and see where your imagination takes you.

If you really can’t remember your dreams, think about something you would really like to do but can’t (skydiving, horseback riding, whatever it may be). Or imagine going to a foreign country or into outer space. Maybe you like medieval history or camping in exotic places. Find something that interests you and do some research.

My Pharaoh Queens series began because I have an intense interest in ancient Egyptian history. More specifically, I was intrigued by the first female Pharaoh, King Hatshepsut, who lived in 1400BC. Her story, as history knows it, is so fascinating because she was a strong female figure in a male-dominated culture.

516vaUhQdWLThe series originally started out with a single book called The Pharaoh’s Destiny, but in my time researching and writing this character, I discovered other ancient Egyptian women who were just as interesting, and so the book expanded to a series of three and then four other stores.

 

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Liberty is an Electric Eclectic novelette that explores another possible ending to the story in The Pharaoh’s Destiny. Check it out if you would like a quick read about an ancient time.

 

 

Today, I have been in remission from leukaemia for more than 6 years, so medical science considers me “cured”. I have returned to work full time and, though I’m not as strong or healthy as I was before cancer, I’m doing fine.

However, without my writing, I wonder if I would have made it this far.

Perhaps, but perhaps not. All I can say is I’m thrilled my journey included creating these wonderful worlds and characters!

Writing healed my spirit. I hope it can heal yours, too.

For more about me, check out my Amazon page or visit my website at www.metamorphpublishing.wordpress.com.


You can find all our Electric Eclectic books together at @open24

The Amazon store for readers, book-lovers, writers and authors

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A river, a walk & a Blue Horse.

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Often people ask how writers find the ideas for stories.

The answer is not a difficult one; it only takes a few overheard words from a conversation, a comment, an image on the news, hearing a song’s lyric or even watching the antics of people interacting, say with children, or arguing; perhaps meeting, or saying goodbye, at a railway station or airport.

Such moments stimulate the writer, wake up their ‘muse’, cause a string of possibilities run amok, often uncontrollably, through the author’s mind. Thus, sowing of the seeds of literary creativity.

This morning, I returned to the river to take further photographs. This time from the opposite side of the bridge from where I took the shots from two days ago. A short walk from where I parked my car, I came across a child’s rocking horse washed onto the shore.

This bright blue plastic object looked incongruous in such stark, open, natural surroundings. To me, the rocking horse appeared sad and forlorn, rather than bright and joyful as I imagined it should. I could not help myself but capture an image or two of the toy.

As I took the pictures my mind began racing, conjuring up a thousand and one possibilities of why, where and how the horse became washed up here. About whom owned it, the family, the child, the situation which led to the toy being lost or disposed of. Was it to hide a secret, as a punishment, cover up a crime, or lost in a storm, washed overboard from a family sailing trip that turned to disaster?

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I intend to write my story of this little blue rocking horse at some point in the future.

Maybe you will take up my challenge and write your own story?

Then, please share it with us so we can post it on the Electric Eclectic blog? https://electriceclecticsblog.wordpress.com/

Email your ‘Blue Rocking Horse story’ to, TheElectricpress@mail.com

Have fun.


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Check out ‘Tales of Crime and Violence’, a three-volume collection of short stories by Paul White.

Available as paperbacks or Electric Eclectic eBooks/Kindle on Amazon and all good online bookstores

Volume 1:  Paperback Kindle

Volume 2:  PaperbackKindle

Volume 3:  Paperback Kindle

A Flash of Horror

A Flash of Horror is a collection of short and flash fiction in the horror genre taken from Karina Kantas’s two collections, Heads & Tales & Undressed.

12 chilling and though-provoking tales that will stay with you for nights to come.
Are you ready to delve into the dark side?

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I never thought of myself a someone with a dark side.

I always thought of my flash fictions as SciFi, thriller, maybe just a little creepy. But then I was a guest on a podcast and the host made me realise a lot of what I write falls into the horror genre.

I decided to take out some of the best horror flash from my two collections ‘Heads & Tales’ and ‘Undressed’ to make this small collection for those who don’t mind not sleeping at night.

Enjoy.

An excerpt from A Flash of Horror by Karina Kantas

VIRUS

“Well, that’s it. Now we wait again,” Maria announced.

Phil watched her sit at a cluttered desk to scribble yet more failure notes. But his eyes did not linger. He scanned the laboratory. It might be the last time he’d see it. Beds lined the walls of the spacious room, all but hiding its sterile, white-tiled floor. “How long until we see results this time — if any?” he asked.

“Same as the others. Twelve hours.”

“That doesn’t give us much time to administer a vaccine.”

“No. And — yes, before you say it, you’re right — there’s no guarantee we’ll ever find an acceptable vaccine.”

On each bed lay a test subject. Even those that had succumbed remained, since the examination of their rotting bodies still offered the faint hope of a cure.

But Phil knew that the virus had won this war. There was no hope. Eight months of this, and nothing but 665. The committee was right.

Phil turned his face away from the rotting, deformed victims, and stared at his co-worker. It was time to tell her, although he knew how she’d react. Maria was obstinate — so certain she’d find a cure.

Phil walked to his colleague’s desk. Each step weighed heavily on him, like the weight they’d shouldered as a team these past few months. He rested his hand on her shoulder.

“Maria?” he whispered.

Her eyes shimmered. “Yes?”

Phil blinked and spoke. “The committee decided if this last trial is unsuccessful, they’ll go with 665. They’ve already begun to manufacture.”

“What? You’re joking?”

 “They say there’s no more time to be choosey. It’s 665 or total annihilation.”

“Choosey! Don’t they realise what will happen? 665 has such awful side effects.”

“Sorry. Maybe choosey was the wrong word, and yes, they know the peril. I agree with them. What other choice do we have?”

“I’d rather die.”

Phil turned and looked at the bed beside him. Clear plastic sheeting did nothing to hide its demonic deformities. IT was the only way to describe this once-person. Its new facial appearance removed any identification of what sex, race or age test subject 665 once had.

More to come…..


You can get A Flash of Horror from Amazon UK; https://amzn.to/2M3wZmp

or internationally via; http://authl.it/B07XP8C5L6 

and from Amazon’s @open24 store for readers and writers, http://bit.ly/EEbooksonOPEN24


Join the Electric Eclectic Facebook Page: https://facebook.com/ElectricEclecticBooks/


Karina Kantas is the author of the popular MC thriller series, OUTLAW and the loved romantic fantasy duology, Illusional Reality.

She also writes short stories and when her imagination is working overtime, she writes thought-provoking dark flash fiction.

When Karina isn’t busy working on her next bestseller, she’s a publicist, author manager and VA. She’s also the host of the popular radio show, Author Assist on the Artist First Radio Network.

Karina writes in the genres of fantasy, MC romance, Young Adult. sci-fi, horror, thrillers and comedy, romance, PNR, dystopian and erotica.

Her inspirations are the author S.E.Hinton and the rock band, Iron Maiden.

You can find her on Facebook and Twitter, where she loves hanging out with her readers.

http://bit.ly/FBFPKK FB Author page, http://bit.ly/BLOGKK BLOG, http://bit.ly/INSTKK INSTAGRAM

Get samples from Book 1 and Book 2 of Illusional Reality duology when you sign up to my mailing list.
http://eepurl.com/daKief 

Titles

Electric Eclectic book
Toxic – dystopian Erotica

The OUTLAW series
In Times of Violence
Huntress
Lawless Justice
Road Rage

Collections
Heads & Tales
UNDRESSED

In Times of Violence Young Adult Edition / MC romance
Stone Cold / YA supernatural thriller

Illusional Reality duology
Illusional Reality / YA romantic fantasy 
The Quest/fantasy paranormal romance

Coming soon
Broken Chains (MI5/mafia  romance)
Predator (erotic horror)