Up and Coming – September 2015

Welcome to my monthly update and thank you for your interest in my writing activities.

Here are the September highlights:

More Poetry – On August 4, my poem, “Miner’s Lament,” was awarded Third Place in the Nonrhyming Poetry category for the world-wide Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition. Encouraged by that news, I sent a second poem, Escape, to the Naugatuck River Review Narrative Poetry Contest. My thanks to Debbie Kilday, President of the Connecticut Authors and Publishers Association, for alerting me to the contest. I am also looking for a publication in which to publish Miner’s Lament.

Amanda’s Room

Still More Edits – After reviewing and incorporating over 100 pages of computer-generated edits from California Times Publishing (CTP), I have now received the human editor’s comments. I asked Jeff Napolitano, my contact at CTP, to tell the editor to look deeper than style edits alone and provide feedback on anything that would get in the way of the reader’s enjoyment of the book. The editor took me seriously as evidenced by my reaction to her comments. Once I overcame my bruised ego, I got back to work and I am actually enjoying the challenge and the resulting improvements in the book. For those who decide to reread Amanda’s Room, I expect it will feel like reading the book for the first time.

And a Whole New LookCTP sent me several options for the new book cover and we worked together to tweak the final design. They loved the original cover designed by Mike and Jenn at Miceli Productions but we decided to go with a different treatment to go along with the completely updated book. I’m including the new cover design here. I think it captures well the feel of standing directly outside of Amanda’s Room.

CTP Amanda's Room Final Cover Light

And the Journey Toward Hollywood Continues – I am now editing Carl’s screenplay for Amanda’s Room at the same time as I am doing the updates of the novel. This is working very well since not only am I looking to include key elements of the book in the script, but I am also incorporating some of Carl’s ideas, especially his treatment of a more active presence of the spirit of Snakes Finley. The result is a more compelling story for both the movie and the new book edition.

Angels Unaware

No. The Angels are Not Ready for Prime Time – On August 15, I met with two with New York literary agents and a publishing company editor at the Unicorn Writer’s Conference in New York. They had all read the first 40 pages of Angels Unaware and discussed their impression of the book with me. The feedback was that the book needs more work. While part of me was initially disappointed, their feedback was accurate and consistent. I have already begun the process of reimagining the book and although it will significantly delay the release, I am convinced it will be a far better read for it.

Stage Lights? – Parallel to my rewrite of Angels Unaware (and that title might also change) I have enrolled in a playwriting course and will be working on writing a short play featuring one of the scenes from the book. This should give me a good feel for which sections of the book to select for development into a full-length play. The instructor’s intent is to produce several of these brief plays and present them in a public forum so I am hoping to offer you the chance to get a taste of what the full play might feel like following my course. More on this to come.

Amanda’s Room – Reader’s Edition 

What’s Next? – Richard and I were to meet on August 12 to move this project further but Richard’s fell ill and the meeting did not take place. We have ordered additional copies of the book and I will be offering them for sale at the Big-E and other events.

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UCONN Waterbury Campus

President of OLLI at UCONN for the 2015/2016 Academic YearI have begun my duties as OLLI President and have already made several public presentations. People have asked me about the challenge and I have responded that I find public speaking and program management more natural than writing. I have spent most of my career managing staff, volunteers and programs and I find speaking in front of large groups more energizing than draining. I look forward to working with all of the OLLI members, administrators and staff toward making great strides in this terrific program. You can obtain more information about OLLI at UCONN visiting our website at http://olli.uconn.edu/

***SPECIAL NOTE  TO INTERESTED AUTHORS, TEACHERS, PRESENTERS AND OTHERS WHO LOVE TO SHARE***:  Do you have a special knowledge area you can share? Are you a recognized expert in your field? Have you developed a skill set in a unique hobby, field or avocation? OLLI members are alert and energized and they participate in the classes we offer for the pure enjoyment of learning. They are eager to explore all that life has to offer and greatly appreciate those who are willing to share their expertise. If this is you, we at OLLI would like to talk to you. Contact us and we will send you information about the program and the particulars of teaching an OLLI course. We will also include a copy of our current course catalogue and guidelines for submitting a course proposal. You can learn more and request an information packet by contacting the campus by phone at 203-236-9924 or via e-mail at osher@uconnn.edu. If you have additional questions, you can message me directly and I will be happy to discuss the opportunities further.

Connecticut Authors Day – September 1 – Thanks to the diligent work and dedication of June Hyjek and other officers of the Association of Publishers for Special Sales – Connecticut (www.bookapss.org/) Governor Malloy declared September 1 as Connecticut Author’s Day. In celebration of this distinction, I joined other APSS authors at the Mark Twain house on September 1. Connecticut government dignitaries, the state’s Poet Laureate and members of the press joined as we celebrated the contributions of Connecticut authors and the important role of literature in today’s culture.

Every Dollar Feeds Kids (EDFK) Annual Bike Run – Sunday, Sept 13 – 10 A.M. – 4 P.M. Wolcott American Legion, 1253 Wolcott Rd, Wolcott, CT – This may seem an odd entry for my writing update, but if you look on the copyright page of Amanda’s Room you will note that a portion of the proceeds go to this organization. I have been involved with EDFK since its inception and I am past Board Chairman for the organization. Our mission is simple: to raise money to feed hungry children in the U.S. and abroad. If you have a motorcycle (or not) and want to have some great food, fun and enjoy the fabulous scenery of the Connecticut countryside while supporting a worthy cause, join us. For more information about the organization and the event go to: http://www.edfk.org/EDFK/HOME.html

Television Interview by Jan Lewis on Be My Guest – Upton MA – Wednesday, Sep 16 -Jan Lewis will interview me and my fellow author and friend, Casey Morley, on her cable television program, Be My Guest. The program will air locally in the Upton MA area and nationally and globally on the internet and U-Tube. More information to follow.

OLC Book Club discussion, Farmington, CT – Sep 18 – As a writer, one of my favorite activities is meeting with groups that have read my book to discuss their views, answer their questions and provide the “story behind the story.” On September 18, I look forward to doing just that with the members of the OLC Book Club in Farmington, CT. Special thanks to Nancy Castonguay for arranging this get-together.

Eastern States Exposition 2015 – Agawam MA Once again, I’ll be back at the Big-E for this annual New England event at one of the biggest fairs in the country. I will be in the Connecticut building signing and selling my books on the following days and times: Sat 9/19 10am -2 pm; Mon 9/21 10am -2 pm; Weds (CT Day) 9/23 4-6 pm; Sat 9/26 10am -2 pm; and Mon 9/28 12-4 pm. If you are at the fair during any of these periods, stop by the Connecticut building, say hello and, if interested, explore book offerings by me and other Connecticut authors.

Madison Craft Show – Madison CT – Oct 3 – 10am – 4pm – While this event is in October, because it is so early in the month, I am including it here. I will be there signing and selling my books.

Know someone who has not read Amanda’s Room yet? Copies are available at the following:

On-line

Amazon.com (Paperback, Kindle and Audio book), http://www.amazon.com/Amandas-Room-Chuck-Miceli/dp/1475291973

BarnesandNoble.com (Paperback and Nook), http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/amandas-room-chuck-miceli/1109800880

Smashwords.com (Multiple e-book formats), https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/131678

Paretreepublishing.net (Paperback).

Libraries –

In Connecticut: Southington, Willington, Bristol, Forestville, Oxford, W. Hartford (Faxon Branch)

In Massachusetts: Dudley, Woods Hole

In Pennsylvania: Laughlin, Pittston

If your public library carries Amanda’s Room and is not listed above, please notify me and I will add them to the list.

If your library does not carry Amanda’s Room and would like to, please let me know and I will be happy to send them a free copy for their collection.

 

Local (In Connecticut)

The Hospital of Central Connecticut, Bradley Memorial Hospital Campus, Gift Shop, 81 Meriden Avenue, Southington, CT 06489

Tops Market, 887 Meriden-Waterbury Turnpike, Southington, CT 06479, (860) 628-8794

The Southington Chamber of Commerce, 1 Factory Sq # 201, Southington, CT 06489, (860) 628-8036

Grace’s Restaurant, 1678 Meriden-Waterbury Turnpike, Milldale, CT,

The Bristol Senior Center, 240 Stafford Ave. Bristol, 06010, (860) 584-7895, has copies available to loan to their members.

 

Thanks and Good Reading

Chuck Miceli,

 

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