How Authors Can Find Their Comfort Zone

An Author’s Comfort Zone

by Sharon Ledwith

This post could have also been dubbed ‘Balance 101 for Authors’. It’s been almost eight years since the first novel in my young adult time travel series hit the cyber bookshelves. To this day, I remember that there was so much to do, and it felt like there wasn’t enough time to do everything. Sometimes, I still don’t. I needed a time portal just to get all my marketing and promoting put in place or at least a diary. This included getting a website up and running, ordering promotional giveaways, setting up blog hops (are they still a thing?), writing a multitude of blog posts, and joining the appropriate social media networks. The lists seemed endless, and when the date finally arrived for my book release, I was wearing my shoulders as earrings.

Needless to say, by the end of my first book blog tour, I was exhausted, spent, and bent out of shape. Even my eyelids ached.

What I learned from the whole experience years ago is that authors need to learn to structure their writing life, or their writing will take a nose dive. We need to learn to create balance so that the task of being a writer plus a marketer plus a promoter doesn’t wear us down. So, how do we do this when so much is expected of a writer nowadays?

Start with finding your comfort zone. Find your personal comfort level with promotion or marketing, do that and do no more. That’s it. Do it. Or you’ll get burned. If you don’t heed my advice, then sure as shooting, negativity will leach into your writing. And that’s the last thing a writer wants!

Need help finding your comfort zone? Go to the dollar store and buy a timer or download a timer app on your phone. It will be one of the most important investments (and cheapest) as a writer you will make. For less than two dollars you can purchase a piece of sanity to help you organize your writing life and keep you in your zone. Set your timer to check emails. Fifteen minutes? Twenty minutes? Then do the same for Facebook and Twitter. But keep in mind which activity will help you as an author in the long run. Apply the 80/20 rule. Write (produce) for 80%, promote and market for only 20%. After all—social networking is a marketing strategy—as long as you treat it as such. Then, once you have laid the timer law down, set it for how long you want to sit and just write, with no interruptions (unless the dog or you really need to pee).

So, stop pushing the zone. Relax. Let go. Breathe.

That doesn’t mean writers shouldn’t learn or try new things. By all means learn and try. Get your hands dirty if you must. But don’t burst a vein in your brain doing it. Don’t put so much pressure on yourself that you collapse into a quivering mass of writer goo. As writers, we must protect our work—and ourselves. It takes time to build an on-line (and off-line) marketing presence in this publishing world. Learn this, cut yourself some slack, and prosper.

Thank you for reading my article! How do you find balance as a writer? Do you use a timer, or have you tried other ways to create balance in your writer’s life? Love to read your comments!

Ready for a trip to Atlantis? Here’s a brief intro to one of my time traveler books.

There is no moving forward without first going back.

Lilith was a young girl with dreams and a family before the final destruction of Atlantis shattered those dreams and tore her family apart. Now refugees, Lilith and her father make their home in the Black Land. This strange, new country has no place in Lilith’s heart until a beloved high priestess introduces Lilith to her life purpose—to be a Timekeeper and keep time safe.

Summoned through the seventh arch of Atlantis by the Children of the Law of One, Lilith and her newfound friends are sent into Atlantis’s past, and given a task that will ultimately test their courage and try their faith in each other. Can the Timekeepers stop the dark magus Belial before he changes the seers’ prophecy? If they fail, then their future and the earth’s fate will be altered forever.

AMAZON BUY LINKS


Sharon Ledwith is the author of the middle-grade/YA time travel series, THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS, and the teen psychic mystery series, MYSTERIOUS TALES FROM FAIRY FALLS. When not writing, researching, or revising, she enjoys reading, exercising, anything arcane, and an occasional dram of scotch. Sharon lives a serene, yet busy life in a southern tourist region of Ontario, Canada, with her hubby, one spoiled yellow Labrador and a moody calico cat.

Learn more about Sharon Ledwith on her website and blog. Stay connected on Facebook and Twitter, Google+, Goodreads, and Smashwords. Look up her Amazon Author page for a list of current books. Be sure to check out THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS TIME TRAVEL SERIES Facebook page.

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History – the Most Important Timeline of All


Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels

Covid-19 is a game-changer in so many ways. It is making people rethink their lives, their jobs, their relationships, their aspirations, even their diets and the way they treat the planet they live on. The virus landed like a bolt out of the blue, illuminating the dark places in our lives and altering our perceptions. Many things that were thought of as important are now shown to be superficial and shallow. The way we structure our days has also come under intense scrutiny. Two areas of human activity in particular are undergoing a much-needed overhaul, and they are employment and education. People who can work from home during the lockdown can see the benefits of making this permanent. Meanwhile, many parents who have been home schooling their children are wondering if they should continue with it.

I was discussing this with a close friend of mine who has been working from home and is considering home schooling. She was concerned about peer pressure at the school one of her children attends and how it has had a detrimental effect on the child’s self-esteem. It is always hard to be different. It’s equally hard for an adult to do something different from what is considered normal. We often stick with the status quo for fear of being criticised. But, as the memes insist, the virus has shown us that normal wasn’t working. It’s time to create a new paradigm for living and my friend has seen the beneficial effects that home schooling has already had on both her children.

But this isn’t a blog about home schooling! When my friend and I were discussing different ways of educating her children, I reminded her of how we used to be taught history. We started as far back as the dinosaurs and moved forwards incrementally to the present day. As a result, I have had a mental image in my mind of every century down the ages with major events recorded on this timeline of history, so that I know where I am in the great scheme of things. I can see how mankind got to where it is today. It is like belonging to the timeline of humanity where everything makes sense, even the bad things, because wars have causes that can be traced back and great transitions, like the one we are experiencing now, can be anchored in time and better understood.

Do children still learn history this way? I meet so many young people who have no idea what happened before World War II (and don’t see the socio-economic and political factors that brought about that global conflict). Yes, they know about the Romans and perhaps the Ancient Egyptians but can’t pin them down to a particular era.

Photo by Fauxels from Pexels

And here in the UK how many of the people who are so proud to be British know anything about the history of the British Isles? Why do we use the words British and English; what’s the difference? We were a nation of immigrants long before the Roman occupation, during which time we really were British but not English. If everyone understood that we have all migrated here from other countries, would we rethink our current attitude to immigration? And if we knew more about our imperialist past with its horrors of slavery and oppression, would we see how racism developed and be better able to reject it?

Everything that happens is a lesson and the lessons of history will keep repeating on the timeline until we decide to take a stand and say no more. Only by understanding the timeline of the past can we see the need for change in the present. Allowing children to grow up without reference points or connections to ancestral knowledge, is not giving them freedom. It leaves them adrift in the modern world not knowing why things are the way they are. To teach children the lessons of history is to give them the tools they need to make their world a better place and create a brighter future.

History is important. In my book Being Krystyna – A Story of Survival in WWII I showed how intolerance for other people’s differences can lead to persecution and conflict. Krystyna herself always feared the Nazis would return, and looking at world events today I think she was right. One way to stop the resurgence of such evil is to make sure that the lessons of history are never forgotten. But first we have to learn them.

Here is a brief introduction to my book. Thank you for reading it.

It’s 2012, the year of the London Olympics, and for young Polish immigrant Agnieszka, visiting fellow countrywoman Krystyna in a Peterborough care home is a simple act of kindness. However, the meeting proves to be the beginning of a life-changing experience.

Krystyna’s stories about the past are not memories of the good old days but recollections of war-ravaged Europe: The Warsaw Ghetto, Pawiak Prison, Ravensbrück Concentration Camp, and the death march to freedom.

The losses and ordeals Krystyna suffered and what she had to do to survive, these are horrors Agnieszka must confront when she volunteers to be Krystyna’s biographer.

Will Agnieszka find a way to accomplish her task, and, in this harrowing story of survival, what is the message for us today?

Buy Links

Born in Stafford in the UK, Carol Browne was raised in Crewe, Cheshire, which she thinks of as her home town. Interested in reading and writing at an early age, Carol pursued her passions at Nottingham University and was awarded an honours degree in English Language and Literature. Now living and working in the Cambridgeshire countryside, Carol usually writes fiction and is a contracted author at Burning Willow Press. Being Krystyna, published by Dilliebooks on 11th November, 2016, is her first non-fiction book.

Stay connected with Carol on her website and blog, Facebook, and Twitter.

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Gazpacho – Author Sloane Taylor’s Recipe for the Perfect Soup for Summer.

from Sloane Taylor

When the days are muggy and hot, cool down with this light and refreshing meal. Add a loaf of crusty fresh bread and a bottle of chilled, crisp white wine to make dinner complete.

GAZPACHO – Cold Fresh Vegetable Soup

Image by Яна Тикунова from Pixabay

1 large cucumber, peeled and chopped
5 medium Roma/plum tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 large onion, chopped
1 medium green pepper, seeded and chopped
1 tbsp. garlic, chopped fine or pressed
4 cups French or Italian bread chunks, crust removed
4 cups cold water
¼ cup red wine vinegar
2 tsps. salt
4 tbsps. olive oil
2 tbsp. tomato paste

Combine cucumber, tomatoes, onion, green pepper, garlic, and bread in a large bowl. Stir in water, vinegar, and salt. Ladle mixture into a blender or food processor. Be careful not to overload either appliance. Set on high speed until you have a smooth puree. Pour the blend into a clean large bowl and whisk in olive oil and tomato paste.

Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 2 hours minimum. Just before serving stir well to recombine ingredients. Ladle into a chilled tureen or large soup bowls.

May you enjoy all the days of your life filled with good friends, laughter, and seated around a well-laden table!

Sloane

Sloane Taylor is an Award-Winning author with a passion that consumes her day and night. She is an avid cook and posts new recipes on her blog every Wednesday. The recipes are user friendly, meaning easy.

Learn more about Taylor’s cookbooks, Date Night Dinners, Romantic Meals to Dine al Fresco, and Recipes to Create Holidays Extraordinaire on Amazon.

Connect with Taylor on Facebook and Twitter.

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The Revelation Chronicles by Chris Pavesic – the Adventure Continues

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Chris Pavesic continues the amazing story of Cami Malifux with Book 2 of the Revelation Chronicles.

Escape from a world of darkness into a magical realm of limitless adventure.

In Starter Zone, Cami kept herself and her younger sister Alby alive in a post-apocalyptic world, facing starvation, violence, and death on a daily basis. Caught by the military and forcefully inscribed, Cami manages to scam the system and they enter the Realms, a Virtual Reality world, as privileged Players rather than slaves. They experience a world of safety, plenty, and magical adventure.

Indeed, magic, combat, gear scores, quests, and dungeons are all puzzles to be solved as Cami continues her epic quest to navigate the Realms and build a better life for her family. But an intrusion from her old life threatens everything she has gained and imperils the entire virtual world.

Time to play the game.

Praise for The Revelation Chronicles:

“She entered the game and I was hooked. I don’t even play that kind of computer game, but the story was as addicting as I imagine a real MMORPG to be. Each level up, each new character, each new threat drew me in. I wish I could read the next book already!” –Kata, NetGalley Reviewer

“I love the dystopian genre, and a lot of the problem I run into is a lot of them are boring and follow the same storyline. This one is so different it’s amazing. I cannot recommend this enough. It’s sci-fi, it’s dystopian, and it fresh. A definite must read that I plan on reading again!” –Liliyana S., NetGalley Reviewer

“Both sisters are strong female characters who are good role models for young girls. This story is filled with suspense and adventure with a taste of the gaming world. It is the first LITRPG book that I have read and I really enjoyed it.” –Teresa O, Educator

“This book was amazing! The story line, along with the development of the characters was phenomenal. This book is very well paced, and easy to follow. Seeing the story play out for the characters, along with the lessons you gain from reading this book, makes it one of my new favorites. For, this book is more than just another dystopia novel. It’s basis is on family love, and what you’d do to keep them safe. It’s a young adult novel, yet is appropriate for anyone above the age of 10. I would highly suggest reading this book ASAP. You won’t regret it!”–Almaz D, Reviewer

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Want to learn more about The Revelation Chronicles? Check out chrispavesic.com for updates on this and her other series.

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About the Author:

Chris Pavesic lives in the Midwestern United States and loves Kona coffee, fairy tales, and all types of speculative fiction. Between writing projects, Chris can most often be found reading, gaming, gardening, working on an endless list of DIY household projects, or hanging out with friends.

Amazon Author Page

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Facebook Author Page

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The Stresses and Strains of Being a Writer -by Sharon Ledwith

from Sharon Ledwith

As an author, the number one emotional challenge I find is being overwhelmed. These days, writers must wear so many hats. Indie authors more so. If you’re lucky to score a contract with a publisher like I did, a lot of the work such as your book cover design, editing, formatting, and some marketing and promoting like book blog tours are taken care of for you. When you’re under contract with a publisher you’re part of a team, and are expected to participate fully. But if you decide to go with self-publishing you either learn the ropes and wear all the hats, or delegate and hire cover artists, editors, formatters, and book promotion or marketing specialists. And believe me it’s not cheap.

We live in a new time of publishing where the rules are not quite yet defined, and anything goes. So writers need to figure out what they can handle, and what they can’t. I hired a web designer. I’ve even hired a book promotion specialist company to help with my social media presence as an author. Writers are a tough breed. You must realize that you can’t handle everything. Or this business will break you. It’s humbling to understand you need to rely on others, and it will create a sense of peace. Balance what you can, and dole out the rest.

Writing is such a solitary profession. Humans need human contact. Period. Face it, we weren’t born to live a life of solitude. Like attracts like, and writers are no exception. I connected with other writers through courses, social media, my publishers, writing groups—I could go on, but you get the gist—because of our common love of books and writing. Writers know what other writers go through. They feel each other’s pain, know what it’s like to be rejected, and invest a lot of time, energy, and money into a profession that may or may not pay off in the long run.

Supporting other writers, and helping them out when the going gets tough, has helped me tremendously when I’ve felt down in the dumps and overwhelmed. And those awesome writers do the same for me. These emotional challenges happen to the best of us. So why not hang with like-minded souls, who can give you a hug—virtually or physically?

What are some of the emotional challenges you’ve faced as a writer? How did you deal with these challenges? Would love to read and respond to your comments! Cheers and thank you for reading my article!

Here’s a glimpse into one of the books from Mysterious Tales from Fairy Falls, my teen psychic mystery series.

The only witness left to testify against an unsolved crime in Fairy Falls isn’t a person…

City born and bred, Hart Stewart possesses the gift of psychometry—the psychic ability to discover facts about an event or person by touching inanimate objects associated with them. Since his mother’s death, seventeen-year-old Hart has endured homelessness, and has learned ways to keep his illiteracy under wraps. He eventually learns of a great-aunt living in Fairy Falls, and decides to leave the only life he’s ever known for an uncertain future.

Diana MacGregor lives in Fairy Falls. Her mother was a victim of a senseless murder. Only Diana’s unanswered questions and her grief keeps her going, until Hart finds her mother’s lost ring and becomes a witness to her murder.

Through Hart’s psychic power, Diana gains hope for justice. Their investigation leads them into the corrupt world threatening Fairy Falls. To secure the town’s future, Hart and Diana must join forces to uncover the shocking truth, or they risk losing the true essence of Fairy Falls forever.


Sharon Ledwith is the author of the middle-grade/YA time travel series, THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS, and the teen psychic mystery series, MYSTERIOUS TALES FROM FAIRY FALLS. When not writing, researching, or revising, she enjoys reading, exercising, anything arcane, and an occasional dram of scotch. Sharon lives a serene, yet busy life in a southern tourist region of Ontario, Canada, with her hubby, one spoiled yellow Labrador and a moody calico cat.

Learn more about Sharon Ledwith on her website and blog. Stay connected on Facebook and Twitter, Google+, Goodreads, and Smashwords. Look up her Amazon Author page for a list of current books. Be sure to check out THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS TIME TRAVEL SERIES Facebook page.The Last Timekeepers Time Travel Adventure Series:
The Last Timekeepers and the Dark Secret, Book #2 Buy Links:
MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀
The Last Timekeepers and the Arch of Atlantis, Book #1 Buy Links:
MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀
Legend of the Timekeepers, prequel Buy Links:
MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀
Mysterious Tales from Fairy Falls Teen Psychic Mystery Series:
Lost and Found, Book One Buy Links:
MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀
Blackflies and Blueberries, Book Two Buy Links:
MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀
Sharon Ledwith is the author of the middle-grade/young adult time travel adventure series, THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS, and the teen psychic mystery series, MYSTERIOUS TALES FROM FAIRY FALLS. When not writing, researching, or revising, she enjoys reading, exercising, anything arcane, and an occasional dram of scotch. Sharon lives a serene, yet busy life in a southern tourist region of Ontario, Canada, with her hubby and a moody calico cat.
Learn more about Sharon Ledwith on her WEBSITE and BLOG. Look up her AMAZON AUTHOR page for a list of current books. Stay connected on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, PINTEREST, LINKEDIN, INSTAGRAM, and GOODREADS.
BONUS: Download the free PDF short story The Terrible, Mighty Crystal HERE

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It’s the Journey not the Destination

C36FinalCoverwyrdsend2On 3rd May, 2020, the project of a lifetime was completed at last. My epic fantasy trilogy The Elwardain Chronicles was published in its entirety. When I wrote Book I in 1977, I had no idea I was committing myself to many years of hard work, stress, and disappointment, and a good thing too or I might never have made the attempt. Whether or not it is worthwhile as a work of fiction is not for me to say. There were countless times when I agonised over giving up or carrying on, and there’s no way I can be objective about the end result, but part of me knew I would find no peace of mind if I didn’t persevere. It is only now in retrospect that I can see the real value of what I did.

The trilogy was my teacher! I have perseverance in spades now. I discovered strengths I didn’t know I possessed, whereas before I saw only my weaknesses. I was forced to learn how to use a computer in my fifth decade and to do this largely on my own, not to mention provide myself with the necessary hardware and software on a very small income. It made me very resourceful. I started as a complete technophobe and now have a desktop, a laptop and a smartphone.

In the early days I watched YouTube videos to learn how to use Word, one of those tools of the trade vital to writers. I worked with editors and other authors and they helped me become a better writer. I took a proofreading and copy-editing course and set up my own business. I learned many things about the publishing industry, about submission procedures, book signings, promotion, and marketing, and became active on social media. My horizons expanded tremendously as I encountered people from all over the world and many became my friends. I wrote four more books, two of which are published, and I started blogging.

I learned how to fail and start again, how to bounce back. Publishers came and went. Years of rejection slips taught me resilience and patience. Authors, publishers and readers showed me just how generous people can be with their time and support. And apart from the realisation that I do have talent and am worthy, I learned that the value of a thing is not measured in terms of financial gain but in the contribution it makes to the world. The enjoyment my readers profess to have found in my books is a reward more desirable than money for all those hours at the keyboard, struggling with self-doubt. It is a great feeling being able to entertain people!

My trilogy made great demands upon me but without it what would I have been? It made me step out of my comfort zone. It brought me out of my shell. It forced me to develop new skills. Odd looking back now how much my characters grew as people as their stories progressed along with my own. How much we grow towards self-knowledge as we travel the path of life is the true measure of our success as human beings. We might not realise our full potential but we owe it to ourselves to try.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and every step after that is an opportunity to learn something new.

Author page Amazon.com – https://tinyurl.com/ybpbsgh3
Author page Amazon.co.uk – https://tinyurl.com/y9ytzj5u

THE ELWARDAIN CHRONICLES

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Maxwell Demon – New Release for Author L Bachman.

small3dmaxbookComing soon is the re-release of a book I was very pleased to be able to read and review when it was first published. This time Maxwell Demon by talented author L Bachman is in the capable hands of Three Furies Press and is set for publication on 21st May, 2020

There’s a Dantean flavour to this novel with its angels, demons and monsters, and the strange many-layered realms they inhabit. The author has created a classical setting for her characters and the colourful imagery and natural dialogue add to the realism of the narrative. The reader can fully sympathise with the struggles of the main characters and no struggle is more anguished than that of fallen angel Maxwell who has loved Lilith for a thousand years and must now save her soul from utter damnation. This is powerful stuff and the author must be congratulated for the fluency and sophistication of her writing.

Here is an excerpt to whet your appetite!

Maxwell was The Watcher over knowledge, writing, education, and magic. His words were final and never failed him. With his sacred words, the abilities he’d lost due to the unique punishment he had been given were returned. Every angel that had fallen had been given a unique punishment fitting for the individual, but all had been given punishments like their wings damaged by hellfire. It didn’t matter if he didn’t have wings. He had a word scrawled on his back that helped him move swiftly. Other drawings portrayed scenes from all the centuries he’d witnessed. Some depicted the gates of Heaven; some represented the scenes from Hell. He was a tapestry devoted to mankind’s history and beyond. Reminders, devotions, and aids, every mark in his body gave him a sense of being more than a fallen angel turned demon.

The black ink drilled with thousands of punctures revealed her name… Adele Manning. Then it slowly morphed, like ink dripped into a pail of water, into a compass. The hand of the compass turned quickly, then slowed, revealing he had to go west to find her. He had waited so long and, through the guidance of another scribbling upon his flesh, he now knew which way to go.

The stick dropped from his hand and he moved, pushing at things recklessly until he found another bag at the bottom of his closet and began pulling out clothes, stuffing others in, trying to figure out what he would need for the trip. He pushed blue jeans, boots, and t-shirts into the bag, along with a pen and tattered old notebook he’d been writing in for the better part of the twentieth century. Tossing his bag over his shoulder, he headed out. He had no clue where exactly he was going, but he knew she was in danger

Pre-order/buy link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B085F42YPJ

You can follow L Bachman on social media and check out her art work and other books on her website.

Website: http://www.lbachman.com

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/writerbachman/

Facebook Fanclub: https://www.facebook.com/groups/bachmanblasphemer/Instagram:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/authorlbachman

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authorbachman/

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Stories from a Migrant City – Ben Rogaly

Bens Book
The subject of today’s blog is Stories from a Migrant City by Ben Rogaly and I know I haven’t had such a scholarly book on my blog before and certainly not one written by an actual professor! Ben teaches in the Department of Geography at the University of Sussex and his special focus is on human geography—migration and the movement of people. Peterborough is a city of immigrants, and of internal migrants like myself, and is the sort of cultural melting pot that might be expected to fascinate anthropologists and other researchers in social science. But the city has received relatively little academic attention. It is a very cosmopolitan place but it is now overshadowed by Brexit and any divisions that existed between the local and migrant populations have deepened. Yet different nationalities can live and work together happily, as I know myself and as the subject of my book Being Krystyna – A Story of Survival in World War II also knew. I am honoured that Professor Rogaly used my book, along with those of three other local authors, while he was researching his own. Ben’s approach is unusual among social scientists because it involved recording biographical oral history interviews with long-standing residents as well as newcomers, and using people’s own words to communicate the book’s themes and stories. He collaborated with many artists during his time in the city, including film-makers, photographers and theatre-makers.

In a recent webinar where Ben read extracts from his book (available online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NVqSBXXd09A ), he also spoke about the long process of research that led to the book: “From the beginning of the 2010s, I spent over eight years during times when I wasn’t teaching at the University of Sussex in Brighton listening to – and thinking and writing about – the stories of over a hundred residents of another small English city, Peterborough – population around 200,000 people – a city that voted to leave the European Union in 2016 by a margin of about 60 to 40. The Peterborough residents’ stories are like a lens through which to better understand wider issues about places and how they change, and about the role of migration in that.”

BLURB:

Nationalists and nativists often blame the figure of the immigrant ‘other’ for society’s ills, contrasting this with the ‘local’ or ‘native’ whose livelihood and way of life are seen as under threat from immigration. Being at ease with difference is seen as the worldview of a cosmopolitan elite.

Published in March 2020 by Manchester University Press, Stories from a Migrant City argues for an urgent transformation of how such terms are understood and deployed. Drawing on eight years of research in an English provincial city and a biographical approach to oral history, this book challenges the ways in which people have come to be seen as ‘migrants’ or ‘locals’ and understood to have opposing interests. Non-elite cosmopolitanism is shown to be alive and well, in spite of racism, the legacies of empire and the devastating effects of four decades of neoliberalism.

REVIEWS:

“Rogaly should be applauded for not only producing an analytically sophisticated book but one which provides us with some of the resources of hope that might one day help to plot a path towards a more open and democratic future for all.” – Professor Satnam Virdee, author of Racism, Class and the Racialized Outsider.

“A powerful, thoughtful and much needed contribution” – Fatima Manji, Correspondent, Channel 4 News

“In the face of the most ugly uses of ‘place’ as a code for racialised exclusivity, this poignant and necessary book encourages us to think more expansively – of varieties of inclusion and exclusion, of unexpected conviviality and cosmopolitanism from below, of tactics of racial capitalism that set us against each other and spaces of imagination that can bring us together. All in the form of a kind of love-song to … Peterborough.” – Professor Gargi Bhattacharyya, author of Rethinking Racial Capitalism: Questions of Reproduction and Survival.

“In this extraordinary book Ben Rogaly shows us that we need to rethink who is considered a ‘migrant’ and who is a ‘local.’ The urgent lesson contained in these pages is that any step towards challenging the racism that distorts and confines the immigration debate needs to listen out for what is emerging in the ordinary life of cosmopolitanism from the bottom-up.” –
Professor Les Back, co-author of Migrant City.

“A ‘must-read’ book in an age of Brexit uncertainty, changing global macro-economic processes and the rise of nationalist nostalgia.” – Professor Anoop Nayak, author of Race, Place and Globalization.

BUY LINKS:

The print and eBook formats are available on Amazon:
Amazon UK – https://tinyurl.com/ydbny5wb
Amazon US – https://tinyurl.com/y8f2r98r

If anyone in the UK wants to buy it directly from the publisher, ordering from their webpage – https://manchesteruniversitypress.co.uk/9781526131737/ – qualifies people for a 50% discount when using the code ‘Stories50’ (so £10 plus £2.50 P+P)

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The Gift of Love – Author Eris Field

by Eris Field

Image by Alexandr Ivanov from Pixabay

People use different behaviors to help themselves through difficult situations. A behavior familiar to all of us is the Fake It Until You Make It. We act as though we are confident, enthusiastic, and in control of a situation. This approach tends to be used for a new or challenging experience that we are not totally prepared for. It is a temporary modification of our personality, not a permanent part of our personality.

In contrast, the As If behavior tends to be part of all of a person’s relationships and interactions. They assume the role they believe is correct and appropriate at the expense of genuineness. They perform as if they were a successful member of society, a devoted, caring partner, or a concerned parent.

Image by Mandy Fontana from Pixabay

The As If personality is thought to be related to a disturbance very early in life of the child’s attachment to others, usually their caregivers. Something prevents them from forming the image that people can be depended on to meet their needs and that they are worthy, competent, loveable individuals. This disturbance influences their later ability to interact with people. They compensate by adopting the behaviors they observe others using in their interactions. However, they often experience feelings of emptiness. Some who are fortunate are able to find a loving relationship that enables them to feel secure and to practice more genuine behaviors.

Here is a brief intro to one of my contemporary romances that is a good example of the As If personality.

Laurel, a 26-year-old slightly impulsive pediatric nurse learned her survival skills through early years in foster care. Her life dream is to provide a home for six abandoned children. But, before she can do anything about the dream, she must sell the huge old house her adoptive parents left her. She must sell it before she falls even deeper into debt. To put it on the market, requires tackling the escalating compulsive hoarding of her reclusive half-sister who lives with her. Paper of all kinds is filling the rooms and hallways of the house. She has tried reasoning, nagging, and threatening. Now in desperation, she borrows from her Union’s Retirement Fund to go to a conference on the latest treatments for Compulsive Hoarding.

Andrew, a 39-year-old psychiatrist, is never impulsive. A reticent, somewhat austere man, he limits his interactions with people to his work. His life is strictly planned and modelled on the life of his grandfather who was one of hundreds of orphaned boys raised by Father Baker. Despite the scorn of his father, an entrepreneurial plastic surgeon, he prefers to practice psychiatry in the underserved communities of Buffalo, New York. Being handed Jamie, the mute two-year-old grandson of his father’s second wife, as he is about to leave for the conference where he has agreed to fill in for a colleague is definitely not part of his life plan.

When they first meet, a series of unfortunate events cause Laurel to view Andrew as arrogant, rude, but disturbingly attractive and Andrew to view Laurel as a dangerous distraction to be avoided. Faced with a crisis, they are forced to work together, but will they be able to put aside their protective armor and trust each other enough to let love in?

Eris Field was born in the Green Mountains of Vermont—Jericho, Vermont to be precise—close by the home of Wilson Bentley (aka Snowflake Bentley), the first person in the world to photograph snowflakes. She learned from her Vermont neighbors that pursuit of one’s dream is a worthwhile life goal.

As a seventeen year old student nurse at Albany Hospital, Eris met a Turkish surgical intern who told her fascinating stories about the history of Turkey, the loss of the Ottoman Empire, and forced population exchanges. After they married and moved to Buffalo, Eris worked as a nurse at Children’s Hospital and at Roswell Park Cancer Institute.

After taking time off to raise five children and amassing rejection letters for her short stories, Eris earned her master’s degree in Psychiatric Nursing at the University at Buffalo. Later, she taught psychiatric nursing at the University and wrote a textbook for psychiatric nurse practitioners—a wonderful rewarding but never to be repeated experience.

Eris now writes novels, usually international, contemporary romances. Her interest in history and her experience in psychiatry often play a part in her stories. She is a member of the Romance Writers of America and the Western New York Romance Writers. In addition to writing, Eris’s interests include: Prevention of Psychiatric Disorders; Eradicating Honor Killings, supporting the Crossroads Springs Orphanage in Kenya for children orphaned by AIDS, and learning more about Turkey, Cyprus, and Kurdistan.

Learn more about Eris Field on her website. Stay connected on Facebook.

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Are You Ready for Wyrd’s End?

WYRD’S END, Book III in The Elwardain Chronicles series written by gifted epic fantasy author Carol Browne, is now live! The books in this trilogy are packed with action and adventure. Be sure to get your copies today!

Determined to spare Godwin the violent death shown to her in dreams, Elgiva uses the portal to cross over into his dimension.

Meanwhile, members of Godwin’s tribe seek sanctuary at the settlement. What has caused them to flee for their lives?

Disguises must be lifted and secrets revealed and wyrd will unfold as it should.

But time is running out…

For it is winter and the darkness is coming;

A darkness with teeth and claws.

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Born in Stafford in the UK, Carol Browne was raised in Crewe, Cheshire, which she thinks of as her home town. Interested in reading and writing at an early age, Carol pursued her passions at Nottingham University and was awarded an honours degree in English Language and Literature. Now living and working in the Cambridgeshire countryside, Carol usually writes fiction but has also taken a plunge into non-fiction with Being Krystyna. This story of a Holocaust survivor has been well received.

Stay connected with Carol on her website and blog, Facebook, and Twitter.

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