All posts by mlaonline

I live with my family on the edge of the Cleveland National Forest, serenaded nightly by coyotes wandering the valley below. My dogs talk back to them. Wish I knew what they were saying to each other.

New Review for “NanoMorphosis” from Publishers Weekly

Publishers Weekly seldom reviews Indie Books, so this was a bit like winning the lottery (except for the money part). Here’s what they had to say about NanoMorphosis:

“Anderson’s debut tackles human nature through a science fiction lens. On an overcrowded 22nd-century Earth, Daniel Walker, childhood survivor of an alien attack, is determined to carry on his murdered parents’ legacy and find a habitable exoplanet. Even as he gains public support, he is undermined by Senator Bromberg, a xenophobic politician with a secret life, and sabotaged by Dr. Cadmon Dhyre, a bioengineer trying to find a cure for a nanogenetic plague. Before Daniel’s ship leaves the solar system, Dhyre’s intelligent nanobots infect the mission, developing into Carrie, a sentient shape-shifter who sparks curiosity and fear among Daniel and his crew. On their return, Dhyre attempts to finish what he started and regain control over Carrie. Anderson ably explores the worst elements of human nature—while still leaving hope for the future…”

Awards for Self-Published Books as of 8/26/2018

This is a list of awards offered for self-published books which I have compiled. I tried to eliminate those that have received poor reviews from writing groups and associations such as ALLI.  I offer this as a starting point and make no recommendations one way or the other. Please do your own research before entering your book into any contest.  They all cost money so invest wisely.

(entry fees under $100 per category unless noted)

American Book Fest- Best Book; Best Fiction (closes 8/31/18)
http://www.americanbookfest.com/2018bestbookawards.html

Axiom Business Book Awards (business books only)
http://www.axiomawards.com/

Benjamin Franklin Awards/IBPA

Home

Best Indie Book Award (closes Nov. 1)

2018 Best Indie Book Award™ Entry

BookLife Prize in Fiction (due 8/31/18, max 100,000 words)
https://booklife.com/about-us/the-booklife-prize-enter-now.html

Christian Indie Awards (for Christian market)

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CIPA EVVY Awards (Entries open Feb-May)
http://cipabooks.com/cipa-evvy-awards/

eLit Book Awards (early bird date 8/31)
http://www.elitawards.com/

Eric Hoffer Award (cash award, closes Jan 21)
http://www.hofferaward.com/

Feathered Quill (closes 9/30/18)
https://featheredquill.com/feathered-quill-book-awards/

Foreword Indies Book of the Year (Closes 9/30/18)
http://www.forewordreviews.com/services/book-awards/botya/

Global eBook Awards (Opens 9/1/18)

Imagine…

IACP Cookbook Awards

Cookbook Awards

IAN-Independent Author Network (2019/Opens October 1, 2018)
http://www.independentauthornetwork.com/book-of-the-year.html

Independent Press Award (Closes 3/31/19)
http://www.independentpressaward.com

IndieBrag (continuous)

Submit Your Book

IndieReader Discovery Awards (Closes 2/28/19)
http://indiereader.com/enter-discovery-awards/

International Beverly Hills Book Awards *
http://www.beverlyhillsbookawards.com/

International Book Awards* ($10 off through 8/31/2018)
http://www.internationalbookawards.com/home.html

International Excellence Body, Mind, Spirit Book Awards*
http://www.bmsbookawards.com/index.html

IPPY/Independent Publisher Awards (Closes 2/23/19) http://www.independentpublisher.com/ipland/ipawards.php

Kindle Book Awards (2018 closed, re-opens 2/1/19)
https://www.thekindlebookreview.net/2016-kindle-book-awards/

Midwest Book Awards (for those based in Midwest)

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National Indie Excellence Book Awards (Closes 3/31/19)
http://www.indieexcellence.com/

Nautilus Book Awards ($165 + 4 books. Fiction–no subcategories)
http://www.nautilusbookawards.com/

Next Generation Indie Book Awards (Cash awards! Closes 2/15/19)
http://www.indiebookawards.com/

North St. Book Prize Winning Writers) (cash award, Opens 2/19)
https://winningwriters.com/our-contests/north-street-book-prize

Reader Views Literary Awards (copyright date must be 2018)
http://readerviews.com/literaryawards/

Royal Dragonfly Awards
https://www.dragonflybookawards.com/royal-dragonfly/

The Eric Hoffer Award (cash awards, closes Jan 21)
http://www.hofferaward.com/

The Firecracker Awards (no info for next contest)

Firecracker Awards

The International Rubery Book Award (UK, no subcategories for fiction)
http://www.ruberybookaward.com/index.html

The Living Now Book Awards (self-improvement books)
http://www.livingnowawards.com/index.php

The Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards
http://www.moonbeamawards.com/

Shelf Unbound for Best Self-Published Book (no info)
http://www.shelfmediagroup.com

The WISHING SHELF Awards [UK, includes feedback]
http://www.thewsa.co.uk/

Writers Digest Book Awards (Cash prizes) for:
Self-Published Printed Book (closed for 2018, opens in April)
Self-Published E-Book (Closes Sept 4, 2018)
http://www.writersdigest.com/writers-digest-competitions

 

Review of “The Reality Thief” (Deplosion Book 1) by Paul Anlee

I debated between giving this 3 or 4 stars on Amazon, and decided to be generous because the writing is captivating and the science is impressive. I might have given it 5 stars if not for the frequent and sudden shifts in timelines to stories with all new characters and plots with no connection made between them. The shift to a fantasy like environment with a dragon-slaying princess threw me at first and I see from other reviews here, I wasn’t alone. If you pick up this book, I encourage you not to throw it across the room when you get to this chapter and trust that the author hasn’t lost his mind. He soon pulls you back into a science-based story.

Eventually (and I do mean eventually), I started to see how the earlier timeline must have given birth to the later ones, but it was a struggle to see how they were all connected until the very end, which resulted in another issue for me … the ending felt very abrupt and unsatisfying due to so many unresolved questions–an obvious ploy to get the reader to purchase the next book. I prefer stand-alone novels, and this isn’t one of them.

What I enjoyed most in this book were the deeply philosophical discussions about God, religion and man. I definitely recommend this book for those who question authority and religious dogma. However, readers who are firmly ensconced in their faith may find this book offensive because the main character is an atheist and the religious characters are portrayed as scheming duplicitous murderers.

I also recommend this book to lovers of hard science fiction. The author bases his extrapolations on sound knowledge and at times goes in deep. Those who find the science challenging may find themselves skimming over those parts to get back to the plot.
Having said all that, I found Book 1 intriguing enough to get Book 2. So, I must give kudos to Anlee for pulling me into his world.

Review of “The Korpes File (The 942, #1)” by J.I. Rogers

I gave this 4 stars out of 5 on Amazon.

The author is clearly skilled. Her characters are intriguing, the dialog is believable, and the plotting is complex. However, if you’re looking for a standalone book this is definitely not it, as so much is left unresolved. The novel’s alien world is ruled by huge competing corporations and divided up by race, with Kolos on top and Diasporans on the bottom. Nash Korpes is a Diasporan ‘throwback’ a genetic anomaly of great interest to Special Projects doctors who want to use him in their experiments whether he likes it or not. Nash is tortured by them, and by his own ailments which include three inner voices that nag him to the point of insanity. It was unclear to me whether these voices are real or only figments of his imagination. Nash is also a brilliant tech designer who comes up with cutting edge inventions which garner the attention of the CEO’s of these competing companies and keeps him inches ahead of being sliced and diced by the ruthless doctors. In the middle of all this political intrigue is a love story, where Nash—always the rejected outsider even among his own people—finally meets a woman who values him and falls in love. Their relationship was probably my favorite part, but the novel quickly moved back to Nash’s inner turmoil and the outside threats coming from political maneuverings beyond his control. The author has provided a Character Index at the end of the book. If I had realized that, I would have referred to it frequently as I had trouble keeping the long list of characters straight. If you’re ready to dive into an alien world with the understanding that this book will raise many questions without answering them, then I would recommend it. This is just the beginning of a complex world with the answers still to come.

View all my reviews

Dystopian – Just a word for things we worry could happen someday

Dystopian novels like “Brave New World”, “1984”, “Fahrenheit 451” and “The Handmaid’s Tale” made a big impression on me. Guess they must have because I wrote one of my own: “The Cost of Living: A Life for a Life”. My dystopian novella takes an opposite approach to the low birthrates presented in “The Handmaid’s Tale” and instead tells the story of Janice who accidentally gets pregnant in a world so overcrowded there is no room for children to be born unless someone dies in exchange. The math is simple but the politics are not.

I’m giving the ebook away free for two days starting tomorrow – 6/9-10/18. An honest review on Amazon (and/or Goodreads) is always appreciated, but of course there is no obligation. Read and enjoy. Available free for a limited time: “The Cost of Living: A Life for a Life”

“NanoMorphosis” Now Available

It’s a been a long winding, up and down, road to get here, but worth the journey. My science fiction novel is now complete and on Amazon for sale. The e-book is there now and the print version will be there soon. Here’s the link to check out the listing on Amazon. New writers live or die by reviews. I’m hoping some of you will take the time to post a review to help me along. I’m looking forward to hearing what people think of the book and what they might like to see happen in the sequel.

Listing on Amazon for “NanoMorphosis”

Still Here

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted to my blog here. Probably because of embarrassment over how long it’s taking me to get my manuscript ready for debut. NanoMorphosis is currently in the hands of my editor which should be for the last time. If all goes as planned, the book will be up on Amazon and available for purchase within the next thirty days. The benefit of working with an editor is coming up with a truly polished end product. The downside is the ‘hurry up and wait’ part. I’m in waiting mode again. Working on the book is great fun for me, but sending it off and waiting for someone else? Not so much.