Wednesday, December 04, 2019

The Insecure Writer's Support Group, December Special, & Trans Siberian Orchestra

It’s time for another edition of The Insecure Writer’s Support Group, founded by Ninja Captain, Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Today’s question:
Let's play a game. Imagine. Role-play. How would you describe your future writer self, your life and what it looks and feels like if you were living the dream? Or if you are already there, what does it look and feel like? Tell the rest of us. What would you change or improve?

I wouldn’t say I’m living the dream, but if I went back 20 years and told a younger me I’d be a professional speaker and own a publishing company, my younger me would freak.

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Today we announce the winners of The Insecure Writer’s Support Group anthology contest.

These ten stories and authors will appear May 5 in Voyagers: The Third Ghost:

The Third Ghost by Yvonne Ventresca
The Ghosts of Pompeii by Sherry Ellis
Dare Double Dare by Louise MacBeath Barbour
Return to Cahokia by L.T. Ward
Simon Grey and the Yamamba by Charles Kowalski
The Blind Ship by Bish Denham
Winter Days by Katharina Kolata
Feathered Fire by Roland Clarke
A World of Trouble by Rebecca M. Douglass
The Orchard by Beth Anderson Schuck

I’m excited to work with three returning authors: Rebecca M. Douglass appeared in Tick Tock: A Stitch in Time, Yvonne Ventresca appeared in Hero Lost: The Mysteries of Death and Life, and Sherry Ellis is the author of Bubba and Squirt’s Big Dig to China and the upcoming Bubba and Squirt’s Mayan Adventure.

I’m just as excited to work with the new authors and help them along their author paths.

Keep an eye on Dancing Lemur Press LLC and sign up for our newsletter (bottom right corner of home page) for more updates on Voyagers: The Third Ghost.

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December Special!

Buy any print book directly from Dancing Lemur Press LLC and get two eBooks or audio books free.*

To get your free eBooks or audio books:
Purchase directly from Dancing Lemur Press’ website and state in the comments your free book selections and eBook format (if required.)
Full details here - Dancing Lemur Press LLC

(*Multi-book eBook sets or audio book sets not available.)

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Christmas always kicks off for us with our annual Trans Siberian Orchestra concert.
This was year #15-16? We’ve lost count!
But it was incredible for two reasons:
Our first ever front row seats.
My brand-new iPhone 11 Pro with the most amazing camera ever.
Here is what we enjoyed:

How would you describe your future writer self?
Do you want some free books?
Have you ever seen Trans Siberian Orchestra?

Monday, November 25, 2019

Small Business Saturday - Cyber Monday Special

Stock up on books and gifts, save some money, and support small business!

From Saturday, November 30 through Monday, December 2 buy any print book and get an eBook or audio book free.*

To get a free eBook or audio book:

Purchase directly from Dancing Lemur Press’ website and state in the comments your free book selection and eBook format (if required.) Dancing Lemur Press LLC
Print orders placed directly will also include free swag.

Purchase from any retail site and email a copy of the receipt (sans payment information) along with your free book selection and eBook format (if required). Inquiries @

(*Multi-book eBook sets or audio book sets not available.)

Mark your calendar and visit Dancing Lemur Press LLC this Saturday through Monday!

Friday, November 15, 2019

Favorite Holiday Memory

Hosted by Chrys Fey

Blog Hop Question: What is your favorite holiday memory?
(This includes Hanukkah, Kwanza, Yule/Winter Solstice, Christmas, etc.)

My Memory:

Going back to pick out one specific memory was difficult. Most of the ones at home with my husband and cats have been wonderful.

I can’t remember the exact year this was taken, but Hobbes was still with us.

I miss her – my Hobbes, the “Monkey.” Her sister Calvin (yes, Calvin & Hobbes) was the “Weasel”, and yes, the Monkey DID chase the Weasel!

I also have to give a special mention to Spunky (yes, we had a cat named Spunky – his sister was Rocko, aka Rocko’s Modern Life) who loved to dive into the wrapping paper,

New Picture Book Release from Elaine Kaye:

On Christmas Eve, Gregory and Sammy get a special visitor—Santa Claus! Santa brings them on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure around the world and to the North Pole. Bundle up and come along for the ride!
General Age Range - Kids 4-8 (Story Picture Book)

Get Pea Soup Disaster now! Amazon / Nook / Kobo

About the Author: Elaine Kaye is the author of A Gregory Green Adventure series. She created Gregory Green after her son, who loved her homemade pea soup.
Kaye has worked as a library assistant and teacher's assistant in elementary schools. She currently lives in Florida, but has called Michigan; Honolulu, Hawaii; and Okinawa, Japan home.

Hop around to the other blogs participating:

What’s your favorite holiday memory?

Wednesday, November 06, 2019

The Insecure Writer's Support Group and Music Boxes on Audio

It’s time for another edition of The Insecure Writer’s Support Group, founded by Ninja Captain, Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Today’s question:
What's the strangest thing you've ever googled in researching a story?

I really can’t think of anything strange. I’ve had to research several sports and locations. I researched a ton of items for my two non-fiction books.

Probably what other people would think was a strange thing for me to research was pregnancy and childbirth. (I actually sat down with a friend rather than Googling it.) But I’ve never been through it and I needed to know for my five book series.

Here are the prompts for November’s IWSG Instagram:

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Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C. has a new audio book available:

Music Boxes
Narrated by Nance Weber

A Barnes & Noble “5 Spooky New Middle Grade Books for Campfire Chills!”

“I only desire your talent...”

Twelve-year-old Lindsey McKay's biggest dream is to be a famous ballerina. But after moving to New York, she ends up at the Community Center with a teacher who’s a burly bear in tights.

When she meets Madame DestinĂ©e, the teacher of a top dance school who offers her classes for free, Lindsey can't believe her luck. In exchange, she must perform in the school’s exclusive midnight shows, ones sure to make her a star. But something’s not right...

One by one, the other dancers disappear. Each time they do, a music box with a figurine just like the missing ballerina joins Madame DestinĂ©e’s growing collection. If Lindsey doesn’t discover the truth about the dance school, she might end up a tiny figurine herself.

Find the audio book on Audible / iTunes / Amazon

Find the print and eBook on Barnes & Noble / iTunes / Amazon /Kobo / Books-A-Million / Goodreads

Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C. also has a now monthly newsletter! Sign up at the bottom right corner of the home page for special updates, industry news, and tips every month from our authors. (This month was gifts for writers and readers.) Plus be the first to hear about special sales such as Small Business Saturday and our Christmas Special.

What is the strangest thing you’ve ever Googled?

Monday, October 28, 2019

Editing? What’s That? - C. Lee McKenzie

Good question. My answer is “Darned hard!” My system for doing it has come after several years of practice, so I’ll share it, but I’m sure it’s not unique, and I’m sure everyone who writes a lot has his own “best” way to do it.

Anyway, here goes.

When I’m ready to edit a manuscript, I don’t. By that I mean I tuck it away to age for a few days before I start that process. I’ve found I’m more likely to pick up on mistakes and typos if I haven’t just been deeply involved in the story.

When I’m ready to come back fresh to it, I do a printout of the whole book, turn off my computer, and even go someplace besides where I usually write.

I do a complete read-through out loud and with a pencil in hand, I make a quick check mark if I see or hear a problem--any kind--but I don’t stop to fix that error yet.

Once I’ve read the story in this manner, I go back and look at all of the check-marked places and fix them. These errors are everything from double spaces, to missing words, to bad phrasing and stilted dialogue, to descriptions that aren’t right for the character or the setting. Then I do another print out and start again.

This time I don’t read aloud (the theory being that I’ve caught the bad phrasing and stilted dialogue), but I focus on the technical stuff (a broad, but essential category that includes those gremlins, like, double or missing words, comma splices, unintentional run-on sentences, and--heaven forbid--dangling modifiers).

Then I send that well-edited, well-polished manuscript to my critique group and wait. When they get back to me, I discover I’ve missed a few items and my manuscript isn’t quite as perfect as I’d imagined. More editing.

In the end, if I’m flushed with coin of the realm, I send a book to a professional editor, before I submit it for consideration.

As I’m so often reminded, “The devil’s in the details,” and I cringe when I still find an error after all of my work. However, I’ve seen some missed edits in books published by the big houses, so I know I’m not the only human being who doesn’t catch all of her mistakes.

Thank you for this chance to share your great blog space today, Diane. I loved my visit, and I hope some of what I shared will be of interest to your readers.

For more information on Lee and her writing, connect with her on:
Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Website

The author’s other young adult books include:
Sliding On the Edge
Princess of Las Pulgas
Double Negative
Sudden Secrets
(Plus she’s the author of a great middle grade book from Dancing Lemur Press - Some Very Messy Medieval Magic!)

NOT GUILTY is available at:
Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords

There is also a giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

What is your editing like? What is your process?

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Journey Down the Trail of Tears

Dancing Lemur Press is proud to present its latest release:

Stone Man
And the Trail of Tears

By Charles Suddeth

Driven to Stone Man’s trail...

After U.S. soldiers attack twelve-year-old Tsatsi’s Cherokee village, his family flees to the Smokey Mountains. Facing storms, flood, and hunger, they’re forced to go where Stone Man, a monstrous giant, is rumored to live.

His family seeks shelter in an abandoned village, but soldiers hunt them down. Tsatsi and his sister Sali escape, but Sali falls ill and is kidnapped by Stone Man. Tsatsi gives chase and confronts the giant, only to learn this monster isn’t what he seems.

Their journey is a dangerous one. Will Tsatsi find the strength to become a Cherokee warrior? And will they ever find their family?

6x9 trade paperback, 164 pages
Print ISBN 9781939844620 - $12.95
EBook ISBN 9781939844637 - $3.99
Juvenile Fiction: Boys & Men/Legends, Myths, Fables-Native American/Historical-United States-General

“The scenery was wonderful and I loved the action-packed scenes. As sad as the story was, I liked how all the characters were still hopeful and did not give up. We should all have the mentality of these characters. I adored the ending and it warmed my heart! 5 stars.” – Pages for Thoughts reviews

"The story starts off at a frantic pace and doesn't let up, sure to pull in readers who normally don't read historical fiction. The ending is perfectly executed.” - Greg Pattridge, Always in the Middle reviews

“This is a historical adventure which draws in and allows the reader to feel as if they are really there.” – Tonja Drecker, author of Music Boxes

“I found this story enjoyable, educational, and inspiring. It inspired me to reach out to others and help people in need, even if they’re strangers” – The Wood Between the World reviews

Charles Suddeth loves to tell stories of all sizes and shapes and flavors. He has published picture books, middle readers’ books, young adult thrillers, and adult mysteries. Of Cherokee heritage, he draws inspiration from hiking Tom Sawyer State Park and teaches in Louisville, Kentucky.

Buy it at Barnes & Noble / iTunes / Amazon / Kobo / Dancing Lemur Press

The author is also doing a blog tour, talking about many aspects of the Trail of Tears and Cherokee Indians:

Oct. 3 - Bookworm For Kids - interview
Oct. 5 - Damien Larkin - guest post
Oct. 7 - June McCrary Jacobs - interview
Oct. 8 - Angela Brown - guest post
Oct. 9 - Jemi Fraser - guest post
Oct. 10 - Sandra Cox - guest post
Oct. 12 - Ellen the Cynical Sailor - interview
Oct. 14 - World of My Imagination - interview
Oct. 15 - Beverly Stowe McClure - guest post
Oct. 16 - Sherry Ellis - interview
Oct. 21 - Dorine White - interview

How much do you know about Cherokee Indians and the Trail of Tears?

Wednesday, October 02, 2019

The Insecure Writer's Support Group #IWSG

It’s time for another edition of The Insecure Writer’s Support Group, founded by Ninja Captain, Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Today’s question:
It's been said that the benefits of becoming a writer who does not read is that all your ideas are new and original. Everything you do is an extension of yourself, instead of a mixture of you and another author. On the other hand, how can you expect other people to want your writing, if you don't enjoy reading? What are your thoughts?

I don’t see how anyone can write who isn’t also a reader. It would be like an artist who hates to look at art or a ball player who never watches a game. How would you learn? Yes, we pick up little bits of other writers. But the more we write, the more our own voice emerges.

This month’s WEP event:

* * *

We finished and released the cover for our late spring release, Lost Helix by Scott Coon:

Our next event is Fayetteville Comic Con in Fayetteville, NC – Oct. 19-20. If you’re in central NC, come get your geek on at the con and stop by our booth.

Finally, the Hampton Roads Writer’s Conference was absolutely wonderful – so well organized and everyone so helpful. They even had vegan food for me.
But a huge treat was meeting author and blogger, Toi Thomas. She had so much energy and a wonderful smile.

What does your October look like? Anyone else going through bags of Mellowcream Pumpkins like there’s no tomorrow?

Monday, September 23, 2019

Putting Together an Anthology

Dancing Lemur Press has published numerous anthologies over the years. Today I’d like to share Terri A. Wilson’s thoughts on putting together Area 51 Raid Anthology.

Don't bother with the raid. Stay home and learn all about it in the comfort of your own home.

What’s in Area 51? Is the government hiding aliens? Elvis? Maybe the set of the Apollo moon landing? Do you know?

We do.

Join this multi-genre group as they explore the hidden recesses of Area 51, which up until now have only been whispered conspiracies. Don’t bother with the raid. Stay home, read these awesome stories and learn all you need to know.

The truth is just a page-flip away.

*All proceeds will go to US Veterans.

Universal Book Links: Books 2 Read

Interview with Terri A. Wilson, Anthology Organizer

1. What made you choose this genre and theme for the anthology?

I know that if I had been around in the sixties, I would have gone to Woodstock. I’d love to go the Running Man one year. Gatherings like this fascinate me. It reminds me that there is a lot good still left in the world. I’m also a conspiracist. There are a lot of things the government hides from us. When I heard about the raid on Area 51, it just sounded like a fun event. I’m not going to spend money and time traveling out there, but I thought I could capture some of that fun community with my author friends. It also seemed like a great way to give back, which is why I was adamant about donating to a charity.

2. How did you go about soliciting entries?

I ran it past a good writer friend of mine to see if it was a good of an idea as I thought. Then we just posted on Facebook and tagged everyone we knew and asked them to tag people they knew. I’ve asked people in real life who have expressed an interest in writing a book. I even asked the kid who organized this event in the first place. We had about thirty people within forty-eight hours.

3. What’s it like to work with a flock of authors?

It’s energizing, fun, and challenging. This is the first project like this that I’m organizing. In some ways I’m learning as I go. I have authors of all abilities and personalities. My personality is very laid back and so at first, I didn’t have strict guidelines except for the deadline. Then I realized, some need those guidelines. I also learned pretty quickly that as the organizer I needed to make some decisions and then stick with them. I’m not forcing anyone to participate in this anthology. It was important to me to keep the opportunity open to anyone who can get an edited story to me by the due date. This will be the first chance for at least one person to publish. That excites me the most about this project.

That’s how I feel about the anthologies we put together – it’s some writer’s first published story and that’s exciting.

Will you be picking up a copy or submitting to another anthology this year?

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Book Festivals, Writer’s Conferences, and an Upcoming Book

Book Festivals – Book ‘Em NC

I had the honor and pleasure of meeting one of Dancing Lemur Press’ authors this past weekend - Sherry Ellis.

She drove up from the Atlanta area to attend the event. And while the crowds were thin this year, it was still a wonderful opportunity for my illustrator and I to get to know Sherry better. She is a total delight! And so willing to do whatever it takes to make her books successful.

We’re also excited to announce the next book in her series will come out next September – Bubba and Squirt’s Mayan Adventure.

Writing Conferences

The Hampton Roads Writer’s Conference is this weekend, Sept. 19-21. It will be held in the Holiday Inn on Greenwich Rd in Virginia Beach, VA.

We will be taking pitches Friday and Saturday and teaching two sessions – book publishing and book promoting.

I believe there’s still time to register for the conference – visit their website.

And if you can’t make the conference but live in the area, I would love to see you! My Friday night is committed to meeting up with a couple formerly in our Singles Ministry, but I will have a little time Thursday evening.

Upcoming Book

I’m also thrilled to reveal the cover for our March 17, 2020 release – Gabe’s Guardian Angel by Beverly Stowe McClure:

How many authors have you met? (Dancing Lemur Press authors I’ve met – Sandra Cox, Alex J. Cavanaugh, Jessica Ferguson, Sylvia Ney, Denise Sutton, Maria Santomasso-Hyde, Beverly Weeks – and now Sherry Ellis.)

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group and Upcoming Events

It’s time for another edition of The Insecure Writer’s Support Group, founded by Ninja Captain, Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Today, Sept. 4th, is the last day to enter the IWSG anthology contest – don’t miss it. Details here - Annual Anthology Contest.

Today’s question:
If you could pick one place in the world to sit and write your next story, where would it be and why?

I have two locations I would pick.

First would be on the banks of Loch Ness. We visited there in 1999 and the place really does have a mystical feel to it.

Second would be the House on the Rock in Wisconsin. I visited it solo in 1987 and was simply mesmerized by this unique attraction, especially the world’s largest carousel.

Considering my on-again/off-again project is paranormal, I think either location would be perfect.

What’s your ideal location?

* * *

This past month or so, Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C. signed contracts for two more books. And potentially another one this week! So very busy right now.

I have two events this month. Both were cancelled last year due to Hurricane Florence, so hopefully Hurricane Dorian doesn’t do the same to them this year.

Sept. 14 - Book ‘Em NC
9:30 – 4 pm, Robeson Community College, Lumberton, NC
Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C. will have a booth there, selling print and audio books, plus some original art prints and stickers.
DLP author Sherry Ellis will also be there, and I’m excited to meet her in person.

Sept. 19-21 Hampton Roads Writers Conference
September 19 - 21, 2019
Holiday Inn, Virginia Beach - Norfolk Hotel & Conference Center, Virginia Beach VA
I’m doing two talks, one on book publishing and the other on book marketing, and Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C. will be taking pitches from writers all weekend.

If you live in the area, I hope to see you there!

And if I am slow to comment or offline for a bit, my cousin was severely burned in a forest fire Sunday night (he's a volunteer firefighter) and is in the burn unit in Seattle. Between that and a ton of work to do, everything else is taking a back seat right now. Plus a hurricane is headed our direction.

Wednesday, August 07, 2019

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group and Comic Con Photos

It’s time for another edition of The Insecure Writer’s Support Group, founded by Ninja Captain, Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Today’s question:
Has your writing ever taken you by surprise? For example, a positive and belated response to a submission you'd forgotten about or an ending you never saw coming?

The only thing that really surprised me was how easily I took to writing non-fiction after writing fiction my whole life.

* * *

The IWSG anthology contest is open for one more month.

The genre is middle grade historical – adventure/fantasy.

For those who are confused by the genre:

Middle grade – suitable for 9 – 14 year-old children.

Historical – it must have historical aspects and be set in a time before 2000 or earlier. It just needs to be set in the past.

Adventure/fantasy – the subgenre can be either adventure OR fantasy. The fantasy genre is acceptable as there are many ancient cultures and times that believed in supernatural occurrences.

* * *

We are also welcoming new IWSG admin, Juneta Key. She is a delightful addition and we welcome her to the team.

* * *

The Write…Edit…Publish challenge for August is Red Wheelbarrow.

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August’s IWSG Instagram -

* * *

We have one review copy left of Stone Man: And the Trail of Tears. It’s a historical middle grade book geared towards boys.

If you are interested in reviewing it and perhaps featuring the author on his blog tour, left me know in the comments.

* * *

I’d like to end with some photos from Dancing Lemur Press’ recent cons. Both were huge successes.

Raleigh Galaxycon:

Greenville Comic Con:

Have you ever been to a comic con?

Monday, July 15, 2019

Writing, Publishing and Promotion (plus some irradiated lemurs!)

Books have three phases.

Phase One: Writing.
The writing phase consists of research, outlining (unless you are a panster) and the actual hinnie- in-the-chair, stop procrastinating and write.

Phase Two: Publishing.
If you are going the traditional route or small press route you now need to produce a query letter that shines. For trad, your letter will go to agents. For small press or E pub, your query letter will go directly to the publisher/editor. Once your letter is accepted, you’ll either be asked for sample chapters or the entire manuscript. If your work is a good fit for the publisher, you’ll be offered a contract. After your work has found a home, you will be involved in two to three rounds of edits. If you are an Indie author you will need to edit/proof, get your work beta read, edit/proof again and buy a cover. Then you format your book and publish.
Now you kick back and wait for the royalties to come pouring in. Ha. Ha. Just checking to make sure you are still reading.

Phase Three: Promotion.
This actually starts before publication and continues for at least the first month after publication. Whether you have published trad, small press or indie, the author still needs to market if he/she wants a shot at his/her book being successful. There are several venues: Twitter, Facebook, newsletters, blog tours, contests/giveaways, and preorders.

Once the three phases are finished, give yourself a little break (or a long one) and celebrate.

Now go back to Phase One and write your next book.

Ben Evers is a drifter that never stays in one place too long, always hankering to see what’s over the next horizon. His traveling companion—an eagle. He lives by two rules. Mind his own business and always treat women with respect. The first rule stands him in good stead until he meets former Texas Ranger John T. McAllen and his niece Kate Landon. The two are drawing him into their lives and Ben knows from personal experience no good ever comes from getting involved in other folks’ trouble. John T. and his neighbor are caught up in a feud over land and Clary’s daughter. When danger strikes, swift and hard, Ben has a decision to make. Turn his back and ride away from people he’s grown to care about or break his rule of minding his own business, and stay and fight.

*Warning. Content contains six-guns, hand-tooled boots, strong women and an eagle.
Preorder ThunderTree here
About Sandra:
Sandra is a vegetarian, animal lover and avid gardener. She lives with her husband, their dog and several cats in sunny North Carolina.
Besides western and western romance, Sandra also writes time-travel, paranormal and regency romance, young adult fantasy and non-fiction. She is a category bestselling Amazon author, Eppie finalist and Golden Ankh Award winner. ThunderTree is her first book written as S. Cox.

She can be found at: Twitter / Amazon / blog

* * *

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group is seeking an admin to help run the site and group.

Must be active member of either the blog hop or Facebook.

If you are interested, please send an email.

Email - admin @

* * *

And the irradiated lemurs are back!

Dancing Lemur Press will be at Raleigh Galaxycon (formerly Supercon) July 25-28 at the Raleigh Convention Center.

We’ll also be at Greenville Comic Con on August 3 at the Greenville Convention Center

Stop by the booth to register to win free print, eBook, and audio books.

In addition to our titles, we are selling original art prints (Black Panther, Firefly, Richard Dean Anderson, and more), anime stickers, and magazines.

We’ll be posting cosplayers on our Instagram, so don’t miss all the fun costumes.

And remember – irradiated lemurs will bite!

Are you familiar with the three phases of books? Will we see you at either con? I’ll be busy for those two weeks, so not around much. But I’ll be one happy camper when I meet Wil Wheaton at Galaxycon. (I won the meet & greet package!)