Up and Coming – May / June 2016

Are You a New, Aspiring or Established Author?

Check at the bottom of this month’s alert for information on organizations and publications of interest to writing professionals.

Now on to what’s Up and Coming. As will be self-evident from the following, I am entering into one of the busiest times of my year.

Injured Angels:

Thanks to fans who keep asking how it’s coming and to a writer’s group that holds my feet to the fire for ongoing productivity, I am working more steadily on the new book each week. There is still much rewriting to go but it’s moving forward. More to come.

Amanda’s Room:

The movie: I will be meeting with the screenwriter, Carl Guerra, on the morning of May 11 to plan out our next steps. We welcome inquiries from interested producers. More to come.

The book: A description of Amanda’s Room and publication information appears in the April 26, 2016 issue of Publisher’s Weekly.

I will be meeting with Richard LaPorta of Husky Trail Press on the afternoon of May 11 to initiate republishing the Amanda’s Room Reader’s Edition through Ingram.

Upcoming Events:

Book Sale and Signing: May 6, 10 am – 5pm – Paradies Lagardere Travel Retail Shops – Bradley International Airport – Windsor Locks, CT. If you are flying in or out of Bradley International Airport on the Friday before Mother’s Day look for me on the concourse and stop by to say hello. I will be there on May 6 selling and signing my books and I am thrilled that Paradies Lagardere Travel Retail will be carrying Amanda’s Room for sale after the event.

Book Sale and Signing:  May 14 and 15, 10 am – 6 pm – Made in Connecticut Expo – Farmington Polo Grounds – 152 Town Farms Road – Farmington, CT.  This is one of my favorite annual events. Over 300 companies and businesses all featuring items made in Connecticut. There is no better event to sample all that Connecticut has to offer. The fair is expected to draw between 35,000 and 40,000 people but the grounds are so expansive that it doesn’t feel crowded. Saunter past the tents, sample food, beverages and goodies (you can smell the chocolate and pastries aisles away), shop for arts, crafts and Connecticut made products and visit our book booth to examine books in a wide variety of genres from nine Connecticut authors.

Book Discussion: May 15, 7:00 – 8:00 pm, Southington Mini Diner, 1765 Meriden-Waterbury Turnpike, Southington, CT  This is something brand new I am trying. Two new restaurants are now carrying autographed copies of Amanda’s Room for sale. Since people generally go there, not to purchase books but to enjoy a meal and conversation, I am hosting discussions with those who have read the book and are interested in the “story behind the story.” The Southington Mini Diner is one of our favorite places to eat at any time of the day. If you have already read the book but would like to join in on the discussion, call the Mini Diner and tell them you plan to attend. The number is 860-276-8237. Ask for Theresa or her son if they are around as they have been helping plan this.

Book Sale and Signing:  May 21, 10 am – 4 pm – Warren County Sci-Fi Fantasy Day – East Washington Avenue – Downtown Washington NJ.  Are you a sci-fi geek? This promises to be tons of fun. More than just the event itself, Washington NJ appears to be a very hospitable place to visit. Check out their Facebook page for a whole series of videos from local restaurant and shop owners welcoming you to their town for last year’s inaugural event. I am thrilled to be selling and signing copies of Amanda’s Room at the same venue as my son Jason’s game development company, Geek Fever Games  (http://www.geekfevergames.com/)  More information on the Warren County Sci-Fi Fantasy Day at: https://www.facebook.com/WCSFD/timeline

Book Discussion: May 26, 7:00 – 8:00 pm, Davinci Coffee Shop, 1627 Meriden Road – Wolcott CT   This is a second restaurant that has just started carrying Amanda’s Room. Davinci normally serves breakfast and lunch only and specializes in gourmet Italian coffee, tea and a variety of sandwiches and pastries. It is a comfortable, intimate atmosphere. Once again, I will be hosting a discussion of the book for any who have read it and would like to participate. If you have already read Amanda’s Room and would like to attend this discussion session, call the proprietor, Lucy Minnocci, (She is there each day until early afternoon) to let her know you’ll be coming (she wants to have enough pastry on hand). The phone number is 203-528-3711.

Book Sale and Signing:  June 11, 9:30 am – 4 pm – Litchfield Gallery on the Green – Downtown Litchfield CT.  I and a number of other Connecticut authors will be selling and signing our books in addition to over 70 juried artisans and crafters who will showcase and sell their artwork, photography, jewelry, woodworking, pottery, furniture, clothing, glasswork, quilting, leather goods and more. The picturesque town of Litchfield is an art-lovers paradise, making it the second most visited town in the state of Connecticut. This year, the Gallery on the Green will be held on the same weekend as the world-famous Litchfield Hills Road Race, which attracts many of the best runners in the world. More information at: https://www.facebook.com/galleryonthegreenct

Book Sale / Signing and Followup Book Discussion: Book Sale and Signing – June 15, 4:00 – 6:00 pm. Followup Book Discussion September 14, 2:00 – 4:00 pm. Paul Gregory’s Restaurant, 148 Center Street, Southington, CT  This is another new initiative. Since Paul Gregory’s will not be a regular outlet for sales of Amanda’s Room, two separate events have been scheduled at the restaurant. On June 15 from 4-6 pm I will be on hand to sell and autograph copies of Amanda’s Room. Then, once people have had a chance to read it, on September 14 from 2-4 pm, I will return again to conduct a book discussion on the story behind the story. If you have already read the book but would like to join in on the September 14 discussion, call Paula at the restaurant Monday through Friday till 3 pm and tell her you plan to attend. The number is 860-621-9999.

Resources for New, Aspiring and Established Authors:

Connecticut Author’s and Publishers Association (CAPA):  This is a great organization for those thinking about writing a book or those who have written and need advice, encouragement and/or support for polishing, publishing, marketing and distributing their work. CAPA offers very reasonable membership rates, monthly meetings in several sites throughout Connecticut, a monthly newsletter with useful information, frequent webinars, an annual writer’s conference, great opportunities for book sales and signings including a dedicated booth in the Connecticut Building at the Big-E  and a wealth of information, advice and support from other members. Information is available on their website at: aboutcapa.com

Association of Publishers for Special Sales (APSS):  Are you already an established author but need a channel to get your books out into the world? Then APSS could be the organization for you. APSS is headed by Brian Jud, a world famous authority on book marketing, the author of How To Make Real Money Selling Books and one of the co-founders of CAPA (See above). APSS is a rapidly growing organizations that has chapters across the country and now in other countries. They specialize in helping self-published authors or those published by small or independent publishers to get their work out into the world by focusing on outlets that go beyond the traditional bookstores. They have reasonable membership rates, offer very frequent webinars on a variety of marketing methods, in-person meetings, a newsletter with very useful information and a ton of low-cost marketing opportunities (probably more than most authors have the time to use.) They are excellent at partnering with other organizations and using their membership numbers to leverage for discounts on many marketing opportunities for their members. Information is available on their website at: http://community.bookapss.org/

New England Author’s Expo (NEAE):  July 27, 2016 marks the tenth year of the NEAE annual event and the forth year I will be participating. Run by Chris Obert, author and owner of Pear Tree Publishing, the NEAE attracts authors, publishers, illustrators and other writing professionals from throughout Massachusetts, Connecticut and other New England states. The Danversport Yacht Club, where the event is held, is a posh, amazing venue. It also provides a terrific opportunity for networking with the other participants and with radio and cable television hosts and celebrity authors. It is also more than simply the annual event since it links to a series of marketing opportunities offered by Chris throughout the year. This year, in addition to the book sales, Chris is organizing a series of workshops during the setup and networking time. Interested authors can sign up to present to other authors or to the public. Information and registration is available on the website at: http://www.newenglandauthorsexpo.com/

Authors Publish Magazine:  I will devote more space to other websites in the future, but for authors who want to get their work published for others to read, I don’t know of any other better information source for current, on-going leads. Every on-line issue lists publications and organizations that are currently accepting submissions for poetry, short stories, or full manuscripts. Descriptions provide details on the kind of publication, submission criteria and financial information. More at:  http://www.authorspublish.com/

Other Projects:

For some time now I have been working with a number of new authors on their projects. I don’t consider myself a writing expert, but you can’t remain in this business for any amount of time without learning something of value, so I do believe I have some knowledge that can help new writers to save time and needless frustration. There are also people who, I believe, are worth the time because they have something special to share with the world and perhaps I can help them to share it, like the painter whose life-long ambition is to see his work in a book, or the friend whose own dedication to his yet-to-be-finished first novel inspired me to write mine, or the non-fiction writer who, with his wife, is creating a first work of fiction, or the young girl who is embarking on her first book. As these projects come to fruition, I will report on them. More to come.

Well, that does it for now. I hope this finds you and yours happy and well. Until the next time,

Warmest Regards,

Chuck

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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,

 

Free Books by Connecticut Authors!

In celebration of September 1 being designated as Connecticut Author’s Day, a group of Connecticut authors have donated signed copies of our books to be offered free to interested readers via drawings throughout the coming month. Here is the link for additional details:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/zo46nq64eywhtq9/APSSGiveAway.pdf?dl=0

Warmest Regards,

Chuck Miceli