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text 2017-04-27 13:45
5 tips to show yourself as a professional reader, author, publisher

If you're a blogger, author or a publisher you can use your BookLikes book blog as an excellent companion to your other webpages and social media. Here are five tips that will help you to show off your brand with your BookLikes  blog. 

 

If you're already on BookLikes (hight five!!) you can enhance the awareness by writing posts and reviews as well as personalizing your BookLikes webpage. If you haven't tried BookLikes yet, feel invited to join the best book blogging community and follow the tips below :-)

 

1. Blog username and blog title - make them smart and elegant, they represent You

 

If you're an author or a publisher chose your professional name for the BookLikes username -- it will be a part of the www address of your BookLikes webpage. The blog title and a short bio should also indicate your role in the book business.

 

 

If you're a blogger you have more freedom. However, the more similar the BookLikes username and the blog title to your other webpages will be, the better. All your pages and social media will create a coherent and comprehensive set that represents you -- a professional reader and reviewer.

 

 

2. Make it verified and official

 

If you're an author or a publisher make your BookLikes blog verified and official, then you're account will receive additional features, such as author's tab and a spotlight place on the Explore page. If you haven't received your "verified" mark yet, please contact Kate@booklikes.com. We'll be also more than happy to provide your with a BookLikes Know-How manual for author and publishers.

 

 

 

3. Add your links - make the readers find you

 

The readers will be thankful for having all your contact links in one place.

The customization tab (menu->Settings->Blog tab->Customize) is a place where you can choose a blog template and add the personal touch to it. You can also add the links to your webpages where you're active.

 

 

Remember to save all the changes in the customization tab!

 

 

4. When writing - add your source

 

When cross posting from your other webpages or paraphrasing your previous works, add the link to your source content.

 

 

The reader will have a possibility to follow you writings on your other webpages and your content will gain credibility.

 

 

 

5. Make it sharable

 

In the world of social media your content simply must be ready to hit the road web as soon as it's online. The Dashboard share feature allows for a fast and easy click share -- this option is available for the blogs you follow.

 

 

If you notice a nice article on the BookLikes blog you're not following, share it via the social share buttons under each post. Make sure to add the button to your BookLikes book page.

To make the buttons visible go to the customization tab (menu->Settings->Blog tab->Customization) and tick the boxes:

 

Remember to save all the changes in the customization tab.

 

Happy writing!

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quote 2017-04-23 20:00
And it sounds so easy in the stories, even when it’s not. Even when there are millions of obstacles, heroes know exactly what to do. There is always a way out. But the problem with real life is, there is not. And storytellers, you know what their problem is? There are millions of worlds in their heads. They know magic, and love, and hatred, and they have a metaphor for every feeling you can imagine. As tellers, they are fantastic. But when they become characters, it changes completely.

The Storyteller by Andrea Tomić

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text 2017-04-14 20:51
Wanna plan a game? It's BookLikes-opoly created by Moonlight Reader & Obsidian Blue

 

We feel honored that BookLikes became an arena for book bloggers' reading game. YAY! So, who wants to play? On behalf of the BookLikes team and BookLikes bloggers Moonlight Reader and Obsidian Blue, the creators of the game, we'd like to invite you to join BookLikes-opoly! Game play will start on April 15th and end on July 31st, 2017.

 

The following information are copied from Moonlight Reader's blog posts and are published on BookLikes Blog with the blogger's consent. Please visit Moonlight Reader blog to read the original posts, you can also find all game posts by inserting BookLikes-opoly tag into the search box or simply click here.

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A game, posts, all information and rules below were created by Moonlight Reader. In case of any game questions, please visit Moonlight Reader blog or Booklikes Bookish Bingo Club where you'll find other players as well as tips and tricks concerning the BookLikes-opoly game.

 

Booklikes-opoly:

General information

 

I will be posting the complete rules of the game over the next few posts. In order to ensure that the rules/space tasks are available, I will also be putting up a Game Play and Rules Thread in the Bingo Group, I will create a game page on my wordpress blog and my booklikes blog, and I will be posting them on the BL Expats group on GR, for those of you who are over there as well as over here.

 

In addition, I relinquish all copyright to any part of the game and make them freely available to everyone to use them as is helpful in playing the game. Download the images to your computer and post them to your personal blog, upload them to your imgur account so you can post them on GR in your personal threads, print them and use them to wallpaper your bathroom!

 

General information

 

Do not get overwhelmed. The game is quite simple, and is based on a monopoly board, but when I reveal it, it may sound very complicated. Part of my purpose in creating the game is to generate a fun way to do some TBR busting! You should not have to buy new books to gain dollars for your bank! If you want to buy new books, however, I am never going to stop you!

 

I will do a "fake" game play tutorial post at the end of this process, which should clarify things substantially! It really will make sense once you see how it works and it will be fun!

 

Feel free to play the game in the background. There are some spaces that involve a community activity that should be fun, so keep an eye out for friends who need help! 

 

 

 

 

Basic Rules & FAQ

 

* Players keep track of their own game board and bank! Feel free to set up a discussion in the Bingo group to track, if you feel that will be helpful.

* Every player leaves the Start space with $20.00.

* Dice rolls are based on the honor system. You can either roll virtual dice or you can roll real dice at home. You will either roll two 6-sided dice or one 12-sided die. Up to you! Link to electronic dice.

* Virtual dollars are awarded based on the page length of the qualifying book, as follows:

0 to 100 pages: $1.00
101 to 200 pages: $2.00
201 to 400 pages: $3.00
401 to 800 pages: $5.00
over 801 pages: $10.00

*Players are eligible to roll only on odd-numbered dates.

*Like in monopoly, you can play through a space without reading a book to fill the task, the only rule is that you have to wait until the next roll date to move (so, the next odd numbered day, which is going to be either one or two days) However, if you choose to read for a space, you can't move until you finish the book and bank your payout.

 

*The one exception to the "you must finish the book before you move on rule" is that audiobook listeners may have one audiobook in progress while they continue moving around the board. You don't bank your payout until you finish listening.

 

*If you HATE your book, here's what you do! DNF's are absolutely allowed. You can count the # of pages read to get your payout - so if you read 120 pages before DNF'ing, you get $2.00 for your bank. The only caveat is that you have to read 10% of the book to get any payout.

*Game play will start on April 15th and end on July 31st, 2017.

 

*I will set up a Q&A thread in the Bingo group. Please post questions in that thread! 

 

*Where a task refers to genre tags, this is based on GR genre tags. If you don't have a GR account, and can't get into a book page to determine if it has the required genre tags, you can post the question in Q&A. In addition, the genre tag does not need to be one of the book page tags - it can be on the first page of the "top shelves" if the book has a lot of shelvings.

*On the final day of game play, players need to submit the value of their bank accounts to be considered for prize money.

 

Read the original blog post: Booklikes-opoly: General information->

 

 

Game Play - Reading tasks

 

The Lands!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mystery Squares 

 

 

Trains, Plains & Automobiles! 

 

Read the original blog post: Game Play - Reading tasks->

 

 

 Booklikes-opoly:

Additional tasks

 

There are some remaining spaces that I'll explain in this post!

 

Unique Spaces:

 

 

Go to jail: Go to jail. Serve a sentence of 300 pages (or pay the equivalent bail of $3.00), unless there are enough pages in the prison library to spring you.

 

 

Jail visitor: Donate 100 pages (or $1.00) to the prison library before leaving the space. Post your donation on the group "Prison library" thread!

 

 

Free parking: roll the dice. Odd number sends you to the waterworks, even number sends you to the electric company, doubles sends you to the luxury tax.

 

 

Read a book with water on the cover, or where someone turns on the waterworks (i.e., cries) because of an emotional event.

 

 

 

Read a book where a main character is in STEM, or where the author's first and last name contain all of the letters in "Tesla".

 

Read a book where someone gets married, with jewelry on the cover, or where any character is a millionaire/billionaire!

 

 

 

Roll the electronic dice, and perform the task that corresponds to your roll!

 

  1. Let a BL friend choose your book! Post a list of 4 books - first one to comment chooses your next read.
  2. Give $5.00 to another player. If you don't have $5.00, roll again!
  3. Let a BL friend choose your next ride! Post your plight, and see where the first person sends you!
  4. You are in time out for two days. Wait for your chance to roll again.
  5. Collect $10.00 for yourself and one other player!
  6. It's your lucky day! Read any book for your next turn regardless of the task instructions!
  7. Double your dollars on your next read!
  8. Read in the wild! Take your book with you and find a place to read that isn't your living room for an hour!
  9. Post a picture or a story about a favorite vacation spot!
  10. Go to jail. Serve a sentence of 300 pages (or pay the equivalent bail of $3.00), unless there are enough pages in the prison library to spring you!
  11. Read for two! The rewards for your next book are doubled - and half of the money goes to another player of your choice!
  12. Wheel decide - spin the wheel to pick your next "land" and choose any property in the land for your next book!

 

Read the original blog post: Booklikes-opoly: Additional tasks->

 

 

Game Play Tutorial

A Brief Game Play Tutorial

 

I thought it would be helpful to do a few rounds of play, to help explain how it will work! 

Game Play:

 

Roll 1:

4/15/17: Rolled 7, so game piece moves to space #7, which is Toad's Wild Ride in Fantasyland. The task for that space is: read a book with anthropomorphized/talking animals or read a "classic" fantasy published before 2000. I decide to read: Redwall, by Brian Jacques to fulfill this task. My version has 333 pages, so I get $3.00 for the task, which increases my bank to $23.00. I finish it in one day.

 

Roll 2:

I can't roll on 4/16/17, because it is not a roll day. On 4/17/17, I roll a 5, which puts me in space 11 - related to the opening year of Disneyland. My task is to read a book that takes place between 1945 and 1965, or that was written by an author born before 1955. I decide to read The Gunslinger by Stephen King, who was born in 1947.  This book is 231 pages long, so I make $3.00 for finishing this book, which increases my bank to $26.00.

 

Roll 3:

I am on vacation, so I don't roll again until the 4/21/17. I roll 10, and end up on the BL square. I roll my virtual dice, and roll a 5! I collect an extra $10.00 for myself, and for one other player. I pick someone to get the extra $10.00, and go on my way! My bank is now $36.00.

 

Roll 3:

I roll again on the 23rd. I roll a 6, and I land on Adventureland 26, which tells me to read a book tagged adventure or thriller. I'm not feeling adventure or thriller, so I decide to pass on this one. My bank remains at $36.00

 

Roll 4:

I roll again 4/25/17 and I roll a 3, which puts me on the boardwalk at Paradise Pier 28. The category for this one is "read a book set during Victoria's reign or tagged steampunk on GR." I decide to read Wilkie Collins The Moonstone. My edition has 510 pages, so I get a whopping $5.00 for this one. My bank is now $41.00.

 

And so on . . . 

 

Bank: $41.00

 

Read the original blog post: Booklikes-opoly: Additional tasks->

 

 

Have fun and let us know how much you love it! Cause we're sure you will!

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review 2017-04-09 02:04
Review: An Uncommon Protector by Shelley Shepard Gray
An Uncommon Protector - Shelley Shepard Gray

I'm a big historical fiction fan, and when I saw the synopsis of this book, I was excited to read it. Not only was it historical, it's by one of my favorite authors. It is the second in a series, but I wasn't lost or confused at all so it's easily read as a stand alone.

Shelley Shepard Gray once again creates characters that intriguing and complex. The emotions she weaves into the story are amazing and felt by the reader throughout the story. I love that feeling! Falling in love with Laurel and Thomas was a wonderful experience. I won't soon forget their characters!

Mixed among the pages are messages of hope, faith, love, and trusting one another. The historical elements are portrayed perfectly. This is one book I would recommend to all who are looking for a good, clean historical romance novel. You'll be taken on a whirlwind ride and fall in love with the works of Ms. Gray. I can't wait to read another in this series. Well done!

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text 2017-02-19 17:36
Book Love Story: Why I love writing books

 

It's all about love during the Valentine's Week. So far we've read about book love from the reader's perspective but let's change that with the last story in our project. It's high time to look at the storytelling from the writer's point of view. We've invited author Ned Hayes to present his book love story.

 

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A guest post by Ned Hayes

 

 

Storytelling as a Calling: A Book Love blog post

 

by Ned Hayes



          Storytelling is a calling: we manufacture meaning out of events through the act of storymaking. After all, the human experience doesn’t really make sense on a day to day basis. Story is a fabric laid transparent over the bumps and bricks of random occurrence, a map showing the past and the future. It is as if we weave a web of story, from inside ourselves, like a spider, and live in it, and call it world.

         I believe that story is in fact all powerful in our lives. To be truly human is to tell stories. Without stories – without that rhythm of beginning, middle, and end, without that hopefulness of meaning being given by seeing the pattern of a story – I believe that we become less than human. I believe that storytelling is what makes us human. We are homo storytelli or homo sinificans, the storytelling creature.

         This idea of the importance of storytelling was first brought to my attention by the wonderful little book The Dark Interval: towards a theology of story, by John Dominic Crossan. The critic Frank Kermode also wrote a book called The Genesis of Secrecy: on the interpretation of narrative that made an early impact on me. And finally, Annie Dillard’s book Living by Fiction also influenced my ideas about what was possible in fiction.

 

The Dark Interval: Towards a Theology of Story - John Dominic Crossan The Genesis of Secrecy: On the Interpretation of Narrative (Chas Eliot Norton Lecture) - Frank Kermode Living by Fiction - Annie Dillard

 

          Today, I write stories because they give me a way to make sense of the world. The world is a complex place, so I don’t restrict myself to one genre or one style. I’ve now written three novels that have ranged across the spectrum of storytelling, from mystery to historical fiction to young adult literary fiction.

 

The Eagle Tree - Ned Hayes Sinful Folk - Ned Hayes,Nikki McClure Coeur d'Alene Waters Preview - Ned Hayes  

 

          In telling stories, I can also help others to also make sense of this often-confusing and often frustrating world as well. The web I weave can be of use to many people. I’ve discovered this to be true most recently through talking to readers of my bestselling novel The Eagle Tree. In this novel, a young boy on the autistic spectrum wrestles to bring together his disintegrating family as he strives to climb an old growth tree. He is trying to make sense of his reality, and in this poignant and difficult story, he finds a great meaning and purpose for his life.

          I thought The Eagle Tree  was a unique and unusual story. Yet what I’ve been happily surprised by is that many readers have written me to tell me that I successfully captured part of their story of life on the autistic spectrum. They have said to me that I have “told their story” or that my story “helped to show that my son’s life makes sense.” I’ve also been told by other readers that the difficulty of interacting with a family member who has development or neurological differences are described with authenticity and with compassion. They found meaning this book as well. My small words helped to give hope to their experience and made their stories matter. The Eagle Tree  is a story that brought meaning to their lives.

        Yet along with authenticity, there’s one other duty that novelists have: Entertainment.

          “The first duty of the novelist is to entertain,” says Donna Tart, the bestselling author of the smash hit The Goldfinch and The Secret History. “It is a moral duty. People who read your books are sick, sad, traveling, in the hospital waiting room while someone is dying.”

 

The Goldfinch - Donna Tartt The Secret History - Donna Tartt The Little Friend - Donna Tartt

 

          Entertainment = storytelling as a moral duty. We have the deep and meaningful charge to write something that’s entertaining. We are not allowed to tell a boring or meaningless story. Our stories must be interesting, must be inventive, must – in the end – be entertaining to our readers.

          Entertainment sometimes gets a bad rap. People think it’s a waste of time. Yet entertainment need not be shallow. Storytelling as entertainment doesn’t need to be meaningless. We don’t have to create something false like The Transformers – because a story like The Hunger Games  or 1984  is equally entertaining, yet contains deeper truths and gives insight along with its momentum. Entertainment means delivering a tale that can lift us out of our present reality and give us a vision of something beyond our mundane reality. A good story tells the truth, and carries us along on a tide of hope and insight.

          This is why I like to read fantasy, horror and science-fiction. These genres don’t hide their attempts to entertain: these types of books wear their badges of entertainment on their sleeves, plain for all to see. Even the covers of these books communicate their intent, with their spaceships and unicorns and fantastic sorceries. Some of my favorite fantastical and horrific stories include John Milton’s Paradise Lost, Garth Nix’s Abhorsen trilogy, The Ritual  by Adam Nevill, and Tim Power’s The Stress of Her Regard.

 

Paradise Lost - John Leonard,John Milton The Ritual - Adam Nevill The Stress of Her Regard - Tim Powers

 

          In the science-fiction realm, I also have special favorites. Some of the stories I admire the most in these areas include The Sheep Look Up, by John Brunner, Parable of the Sower, by Octavia Butler, and Downbelow Station  by C.J. Cherryh and of course, many books by Ursula Le Guin, most notably The Left Hand of Darkness.

 

The Sheep Look Up - John Brunner Parable of the Sower - Octavia E. Butler Downbelow Station - C.J. Cherryh The Left Hand of Darkness - Ursula K. Le Guin

 

          All the books I’ve named above provide wonderful entertainment while providing deeper insight. Yet the charge we bear to entertain goes beyond the simple affectations of fantasy and spaceships. As storytellers, we have a moral charge to give our readers a removal from the world, an escape hatch into a new way of thinking. Even literary fiction must entertain – it must deliver some insight and tale that lifts the quotidian events of our lives into a higher mythical and hyper-realistic realm. The story must move us.

          I found this truth brought home to me when I wrote my second novel Sinful Folk. The famous literary agent Jenny Bent read the first draft and told me “This is beautiful writing, but there’s not enough real storytelling here.” So over the course of one year after I received Ms. Bent’s feedback, I rewrote the entire book to bring my characters from just a land of beautiful (yet un-entertaining) prose into a story that was worth the telling. To learn how to tell an entertaining piece of historical fantasy, I went back and re-read some of the masters of historical fiction, especially those who wrote about the medieval period.

          The books that most influenced my approach to historical storytelling included Morality Play by Barry Unsworth, Ella March Chase’s The Virgin Queen's Daughter, Brenda Vantrease’s The Illuminator, Kathryn Le Veque’s The Warrior Poet  and Karen Maitland’s The Owl Killers.

 

Morality Play - Barry Unsworth The Virgin Queen's Daughter - Ella March Chase The Illuminator - Brenda Rickman Vantrease

The Warrior Poet - Kathryn Le Veque The Owl Killers - Karen Maitland

 

          The story that I re-wrote as the novel Sinful Folk  was finally published. It had become a heartfelt and harrowing tale that moved my main character – a fourteenth century woman – from a place of peril and heartbreak through great danger until she achieved the heights of power and privilege. My character changed over the course of the novel, transforming from fearful subterfuge into a driven, motivated heroine who conquered the High Court of England. I changed the book into a real story. And when Sinful Folk was finally published, it was described by New York Times bestselling author Brenda Vantrease herself as a “A pilgrim tale worthy of Chaucer, delivered by a master storyteller” and received starred reviews in BookList, BookNote and many other publications.

          In fact, all of the authors I list above -- whose work I read as inspiration – ended up endorsing the novel Sinful Folk (with the exception of Barry Unsworth, who had unfortunately passed away just before I published my novel).

 

          I think this love of authentic tales that entertain goes back to my childhood, when I found myself alone much of the time. And alone with only a good book to read. So books became my companions and my friends. Donna Tartt points out that “Books are written by the alone for the alone.” C.S. Lewis said “I read to know that I am not alone.” This is true of every reader. We read to connect with other human perspectives, to know those voices and embrace those souls. We also read to be accompanied by other voices in our solitary trek through time.

          When I was a child, the books that brought me companionship included Mischief in Fez by Eleanor Hoffman, Ursula Le Guin’s Earthsea Trilogy, J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings  and finally, a story I’ve re-read many times – the deep and meaningful Watership Down, by Richard Adams.

 

Mischief in Fez - Eleanor Hoffmann,Fritz Eichenberg A Wizard of Earthsea - Ursula K. Le Guin The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien Watership Down - Richard Adams

 

         Hoffman’s work brought me into other worlds, and showed me possibilities beyond my ken. Le Guin demonstrated the power of brevity in telling a fascinating tale, while Tolkien showed that fantasy could tell deeper truths, even while being tremendously entertaining. Adams continues to show me – every time I read him – that deep and powerful stories lie all around us, even in the lives of rabbits and seagulls, and that all we have to do is pay attention. The web of story surrounds us: all we have to do is open our eyes. Today, the tales told in these stories still resound in my dreams, and still are echoed in the books I write today.

         Finally, for anyone who is interested in telling a story, it’s important to note that listening to a story is how you become a story-teller yourself.

          I believe that to tell stories, we must read stories. Writers are readers. Therefore, I recommend anyone who wishes to write first become an avid reader. Read a book a month, a book a week, even a book a day. Become a reader, and you will be well equipped to be a writer. And you will never be alone as long as you have books and the tales within them.

 

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And what's your book love story? Join our project, write your story, publish it on your BookLikes blog and tag with why I love tag so we could find it and share it. You can also add the link to your book love stories in the comment section below.

 

Dear BookLikers, writers and readers, thank you so much for participating in this amazing project. Presenting all those stories to You and about You was a fascinating time and we hope that you've enjoyed the book love story week as much as we did.

 

We're looking forward to creating more projects as such -- so, who's in? :)

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