Anita's Haven

books, thoughts, stories, poetry, interviews, writing

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This project deserves your attention and review! Really does!

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Inner Giant e-book

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THE PROBLEM OF THE HOT WORLD by Pam Bonsper – my review no.20

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EDUCATIONAL, FUN & SERENE

Writing a children’s book is never easy, and I commend anyone who tries. It is always difficult to express what you wanted to, in the language suitable and understandable for children, yet not condescending. It is also useful, especially in books for younger children, to use TPR-inspiring vocabulary, which helps the children and their storytellers get more engaged in the reading process. Your characters should be simple, recognizable, relatable, and they should have certain catch phrases or behavioural patterns children could mimic and enjoy. Illustration is essential, and carries almost half the story. Most of all, for your children’s book to be a good book longterm, it must have an educational, non-sensational yet important message.

Pam Bonsper’s book has all of these elements, and deserves its stars. Although, personally, I may say I would like to see a more emphatic ending, a tiny bit more of a dialogue, when you look at the overall, the story really works. It has a lovely forest setting with recognizable animals (later changed briefly into a polar backdrop), very interesting and charming illustrations (in perfect synergy with the story), and finally, tells the story of environmental changes in a very simple, friendly, serene way.

As a parent and a teacher, I can see how this story lends itself to teaching and learning, leading the children gently and inobtrusively into critical and creative thinking, and, provided one reads with them and talks about the ‘why’ and ‘what would you do’, the children can only grow emotionally from this book.

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Book link on amazon

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BRIDE WITHOUT A GROOM by AMY LYNCH – my review no.19

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THE TAMING OF A BRIDEZILLA – MISSION IMPOSSIBLE!

This is the perfect book for single girls in their 20s or 30s, who can understand and relate to the (anti)heroine Rebecca instantly! I can picture them reading it on a beach, sipping through it with ease and giggling, then commenting with gal pals on Rebecca’s perseverance, shopping frenzy and celebrity obsessions. They would pity her and then bash on Barry, debating on whether he was being too patient, or just typically male in playing it safe for as long as it suited him, his supposed infidelity serving him right, or something along those lines.

Rebecca’s obsession with brand names and looks, absurdly expensive wedding plans, the lives of celebrities and her own self, however, make her an antiheroine in my book. Cheeky is her charm, but she is so shamelessly frivolous and selfish that you feel like knocking some sense and sensibility into her. I’d love to see her and Bridget Jones exchange some ideas over a cup of coffee. I got till about half the book on the breeze of the author’s upbeat style and humour (take a bow, Amy Lynch, wonderfully defined writing style), but as you read on, Rebecca’s character gives a new meaning to superficiality. Getting an ARC, I promised to give an honest review, so I am. The author’s witty style was the only thing making the Bridezilla likeable for me. Rebecca is really believable, with her reality-show upbringing and gossip-magazines values, workday hangovers and morning painkillers with alcohol, skipping work, faking sickness to go on a shopping spree, charging her boyfriend’s credit card while he’s on a business trip, weighing whether to dump her or marry her. She reminded me of similar girls we all know, who are not evil, but you wouldn’t really consider giving them the badge of graciousness. But then again, perhaps I was thinking too much like a mother. The author did me a favour there – made me feel grateful for my life experience and age, and lit a red light in my head, warning me to make sure my daughter is not brought up anything like Rebecca. Therefore, my stars do not go to Rebecca at all, or her life story for that matter. They go to the author. Amy Lynch’s style is truly witty, her descriptions funny and illustrative, and her loyalty to her characters truly admirable. You know how they say when a child is less than cute – that only a mother could live such a face? Well, this author sure has lots of love for her character, and sticks to Rebecca’s inner voice all the way, the way a mother would. Every good comedy must have a reality sting to it, and I choose to believe Amy Lynch has packed that sting here, deep under the brand names and Rebecca’s ego-tripping monologues. A book is supposed to make you think and feel. This one has, although in a really quirky, awkward and unexpected way. I am definitely looking forward to reading Amy Lynch’s future books.

If you are looking for a funny, quirky, guilt-free, ego-boosting, sinfully sweet, layered wedding cake-ish summer read, knock yourselves out with Rebecca’s bride dreams!

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Book on amazon

Here is a sweet taste of Amy Lynch’s wonderful style and sense of humour – a sneak peek from the prologue (graciously sent by her promo team)…

Prologue

This is it. I can feel it. Four years of waiting for my beloved Barry to pop the question. Four years of hinting. Four years of dreaming and praying and wishing. Tonight’s the night.
He has chosen the perfect evening for it. You’ve got to give the man credit where credit is due. I mean, surprising me with an engagement ring on my thirtieth birthday in Jacques restaurant? It’s elegant class. I couldn’t have scripted it better.
I spied the velvet box last week, accidentally stumbling upon it when I was innocently vacuuming under the mattress. I’d already gone through his wardrobe and chest of drawers with a feather duster and rummaged through his bedside locker with a wet cloth. OK, OK, you’ve got me. I don’t dust. I don’t vacuum. I don’t wipe sticky things clean with wet cloths. Yuk! I admit it, I was snooping. But can you blame me? The suspense was killing me.

Fumbling with the box, so close to opening it, I heard the key in the door. Rumbled! Sneaking back later, he’d moved it. Next thing you know, he’s booked a table at the most pretentious restaurant in town. All deliciously suspicious behaviour.
The night is upon us. I have taken glam to a whole new level, even shelling out for a new posh frock, a designer one. The works! My tan is flawless, not pasty, not orange, just perfectly in the middle. My lipstick and shellac nails are a deep vixen red. It’s the kind of colour that says ‘Yes, I’ll marry you, my darling. And I’ll rip you apart in bed later.’
Barry is driving so that I can have a drink when we get there. Super sweet! He probably wants to keep a clear head. You know, for the proposal and all. I close my eyes. I love Barry so much I could explode.
‘Now, I just got you something small for your birthday. Give it to you later.’
He plays a good game, I’ll give him that. He’s throwing me off the scent.
Yeah, right! Something small, is it? I love the whole fake out. So devious of him!
‘Of course,’ I wink at him. He doesn’t wink back. ‘Sure, the best things come in small packages, eh?’ I wink again.
He glances sideways with a confused look on his face.
‘Yeah, I suppose so.’
Oh, this is great! Bless him. He really thinks he has me fooled! Of course, to spare his manhood, I will naturally act all, like, shock horror when he produces the bling ring. The poor man is probably sweating buckets. It must be so much pressure to ask someone to marry you!
He is concentrating hard on the road, probably practising his romantic speech. Perhaps he is considering whether he should go down on bended knee or not. Maybe he’s worried he’ll cry when I say yes. I send him a telepathic message.
Bended knee, yes! Declaration of love, yes! Tears, no!
The man needs his dignity, after all.
‘You’re quiet,’ he breaks my fantasy.
I’m thinking about my supersized reaction and visualising the smattering of applause from the waiters.
‘Just thinking how lucky I am. You know – being whisked out for my birthday, and all. Special night, eh?’
‘Absolutely. You only turn thirty once, right?’
Don’t remind me. At least I will have reached the goal I set when I was twelve to be engaged by the time I am thirty. I have no intention of failing. I will have scraped to the finish line by the elastic of my knickers. If he pops the question before midnight, I will be on target.

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THE NAKED NEWS FOR INDIE AUTHORS – HOW NOT TO INVEST YOUR MARKETING $$$$$$$ by GISELLA HAUSMANN – my review no.18

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TELLING IT LIKE IT IS

How-to books are not your cup of tea? Well, they are not mine either, I can tell you. It is much easier drifting away into fantasy novels I enjoy so much, or getting tangled into a web of a tightly-knit mystery, right?

This book is no escape. This book is very specific, does exactly what it promises, is exactly what it preaches and tells things exactly as they are. So when you go looking for specific advice, as a self-published author on a fantasy budget, this is the kind of advice you need. What to avoid, how not to succumb to dream predators lurking in vanity publishers’ enticing offers, money-grabbing fake promo companies, etc. Not attacking those who genuinely help and offer trustworthy services, this book will help you weed out the rotten tomatoes in your inboxes and letter-boxes, and I personally know several whose prey I almost became (but am now glad I couldn’t afford their spectacular/phoney offers). The author clearly states her arguments, makes you no promises save work and learning, and offers straightforward, easy-to-follow practical advice to help anyone like me, a bit lost in the world of self-publishing, self-promotion and self-improvement (feeling kind of sleezy with all the selfie connotations, yet believing in our stories).

You know how you tend to say ‘Oh, I wish someone had told me this sooner!’? Well, this is Gisela, telling you! So if you are beginning your career as an author, dabbling with it as a hobby, or have a friend who is, lunge yourself at this fast, practical and applicable advice and then pay it forward!

Amazon book link

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Everyday Superpower

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(The repetition in the poem is only due to the tablet layout;)

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IS KINDNESS OVERRATED? – guest post by Elizabeth Moore

Sharing her own life story and thoughts on kindness, author Elizabeth Moore is here today. Read more about Elizabeth below her story. Thank you very much, Elizabeth!

Is Kindness Overrated?

By E. C. Moore

I suppose I could say kindness is overrated, if I were speaking about the sort of false humanity masquerading as kindness these days, especially on the Internet. So many causes, so many tragedies, so many sad stories greet us on any given day, and all that is required is a click of the LIKE button to show empathy. We sympathized—as easy as that. No need to do anything more.

But, I’ve been the beneficiary of true kindness enough times to recognize true kindness when I see it. Clicking a button to show sympathy doesn’t begin to meet the requirement. Good deeds, whether small or large, entail personal commitment. And let’s face facts, personal commitment is being replaced by virtual exchanges that require little more than a few hastily-typed words of compassion in response to adversity and need. End of story. Moving right along to the next post…why, just look at that adorable baby animal photo, how good it feels to put that unpleasantness behind!

I married too young. We eloped. My brand-new husband had just dropped me off on his way to work. As I lugged my heavy suitcase down the hallway to our newly-rented, partially furnished apartment, I met the woman from the across the hall. She introduced herself and began to bombard me with endless questions. When she learned that one so young (I was eighteen but looked even younger) had just gotten married, she placed one hand over her heart and said, “I ran away to get married too. It won’t be easy you know.” I had already come to that conclusion on my own, and it hurt to hear it spoken aloud. When she finally said goodbye I unlocked the door and hurried inside.

The kitchen was tiny. I opened the refrigerator and pondered the cold empty shelves. I’d never had a bank account and didn’t have a penny to my name. My new husband would be my sole source of income. My stomach churned.

I hurried to the bathroom, and after I had finished using the facilities I realized there was no toilet paper. There were no towels, no shampoo, no sheets on the bed, no staples, no pots and pans, no silverware! My heart pounded wildly as a question screamed through my panic-stricken mind. How would we be able to afford the necessities needed to set up housekeeping?

A knock came at the door. Through the peephole, I saw the familiar face of the woman from across the hall. What a relief!

She rushed in and set a big box down on the dinette table. “You’ll need all this and more,” the kind-hearted woman told me, “Look inside.” I opened the flaps and began to pull out various items: a sauce pan, fryer and stock pot, salt and pepper shakers, spatulas and wooden spoons, dishtowels, potholders, plastic canisters, measuring cups and spoons, a nesting set of mixing bowls, four dinner plates, miss-matched mugs, silverware, and a dog-eared copy of The Joy of Cooking. I can’t remember what I said. I’m positive I didn’t express the gratitude I felt and she deserved. Overcome by her generosity, my response was inadequate at best.

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Three years later. We had just purchased a house of our own, it wasn’t located where we wanted to live but the place was affordable and we planned to fix it up and sell. After two days suffering fevers from a terrible flu that had sent the two of us and our small son to our bed, I woke up feeling much better and ravenous, as I was eight months pregnant. It was just after eight o’clock at night. The cupboards were bare, so I told my husband I was taking our son out to pick up some wonton soup from the drive-thru Chinese place. I hopped in our pick-up truck and took off. It was then that I realized how light-headed I felt. As I made my way down the wide boulevard the truck began to sputter and I ran out of gas, just managing to pull over to the side of the road across the street from a huge city park. This was in the age before cell phones. I had better find a pay phone.

I held my tiny son’s hand as we approached a cluster of buildings. No phone in sight. A group of men played basketball. One, sitting on the sidelines called out, “Hey, pregnant wonder, what are you doing here?”

“Is there a pay phone nearby?” I squeaked.

“You in trouble?” another voice rang out from behind me. I whirled around to see a big, scary looking man. The sight of him frightened me and I promptly snatched up my son.

“I think she’s lost,” the one from the sidelines called.

The big man squinted. “You lost, cupcake?” he growled, proceeding too close for comfort, so close I could smell the alcohol on his breath.

Another voice rang out, this one female. “There you are!” she cried. I flinched when I felt a hand touch my shoulder. “Let’s get out of here,” she said as she gave me a slight push. I followed the woman with the long hair across the lawn and towards the boulevard. “What are you doing out here?” she asked.

I relayed my story in her VW bus as she drove me to her house. I watched her fetch a spouted can from the side of the garage. Once we returned to my truck and she poured enough gas in my tank to get me to a station, she insisted on following me there. “Drive straight home,” she said once my tank was full, “This town is full of assholes and perverts. I’m getting out ASAP, going back to Arizona, just as soon as I save up enough money. Don’t you know you shouldn’t venture out at night? Ever!” I can’t remember what I said. I’m positive I didn’t express the gratitude I felt and she deserved. Overcome by her generosity, my response was inadequate at best.

These are but only two accounts of kindness from strangers, friends and loved ones I’ve been lucky enough to benefit from. The list of kind people I’ve encountered is too long to clog up Anita’s blog. I do my best to “pay it forward” whenever possible. When the elderly woman in line in front of me at the market doesn’t have enough to pay for her cabbage and onions, I kick in the extra eighty cents. When a friend’s brother finds out he has a brain tumor and needs money to come back home, I donate what I can spare. It’s not always about money though—the giving of our time is usually the greatest gift.

If someone tells you kindness is overrated, how will you respond?

About the author

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EC Moore is the author of INCURABLE, to be released by Booktrope Publishing July 2015. When Elizabeth’s not writing feverishly, you will find her out walking or sightseeing. She’s crazy about coffee, books, cooking, good wine, cairn terriers, miniature ponies, historical houses, tapas, and witty people.

She resides in a fifties bungalow in Southern California, with her creative-director husband, a yappy blonde dog, and one feisty Chihuahua.

E. C. Moore’s website
E.C. Moore on Amazon

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Worth every letter

The review says it all.
Inner Giant

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IS KINDNESS OVERRATED? – guest post by Julia Greef

The author of todays’s guest post is Julia Greef, a teacher, poet, blogger and artist friend I met through an international online teaching community. She is a lady of so many versatile skills, who lives across the globe from me, works and lives in a different culture, and yet we see eye to eye on so many things. I was wondering how she would answer my blog topic question ‘Is kindness overrated?’ and here it is.

IS KINDNESS OVERRATED?
by Julia Greef

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Is kindness overrated?
I find this an odd question, because it seems to me the only possible answer is that kindness is very much underrated.

While a word or act of kindness may feel like a gratifying ray of sunshine on a good day – something that enhances our day but doesn’t necessarily make or break it; when we are down, suffering, worn into the ground, dejected, feeling alone, struggling, in despair, carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders and at a loss for what to do, a simple word or act of kindness can pierce our heart with its gentleness and have us weeping tears of gratitude. It can restore our faith in not only humanity, but in life itself; and it can radically transform lives – both our own and the lives of others.

When we are touched by an act of kindness we are jolted suddenly out of our everyday preoccupations into our heart space. As we make this move from head to heart, our heart opens and expands and we feel more at ease; more centered; more aligned with ourselves, with our world and with the Universe. We are brought back to the truth of who we are as we are reminded of the endless capacity for love and compassion that lies at the heart of all of us. So a word or act of kindness is a potent healing force, bringing us back to ourselves and our intrinsic wholeness.

When we touch the life of someone else with kindness, all the blessings that are bestowed on them are also bestowed on us. We feel more present, more connected, more vibrantly alive. We feel this ‘rush’ of kindness expand from our heart into every cell of our body. By choosing to be kind we are actively expressing the highest and most noble part of who we are; knowing this we feel beautiful from the inside out. And, I ask, what better feeling is there than that?

If you really want to start to feel good about yourself; your day; your week; your life, choosing to incorporate conscious words and acts of kindness into your day-to-day life is one of the best ways to go. Scientific research has found a multitude of benefits related to ‘practicing’ kindness – from reduced stress and increased self-esteem to greater happiness and an all-round sense of well-being. It would seem that kindness is as much a healing force in the life of the person being kind as it is in the life of the person on the receiving end of the kindness.

So our kindness is a precious gift we give to others and, at the same time, a legacy of love that we bestow on ourselves. Quite apart from all the aforementioned benefits, it is my belief that we can only know the beauty and the depth of our most essential nature, can only appreciate our own intrinsic worth and value, when we cultivate kindness. And as we do so we grow in love; both for ourselves and for all of existence.
Just to make a good thing even better, kindness is never more than a fingertip’s breadth away. We always have the choice to be kind in any and all situations. And every time we make this choice, we are honouring both ourself and the other – demonstrating our deep respect for the divine spark of life in them, which in and of itself is enough to render them worthy of our love; and, at the same time, showing our deep respect for the life that we are by choosing right action and the expression of the highest aspect of our being.
And when we choose to be kind in the face of persistent unkindness… The world may see it as our weakness; but I am of the opinion that in that capacity for kindness lies our strength, our beauty and our grace.

Far from being overrated, I don’t think we can ever really know the deep and penetrating significance of our kindnesses. Every time we choose kindness we radiate love and well-being out into the world; and this is a world that is in desperate need of such tremendously potent and powerful healing energies.
We literally have no idea how profoundly one word of kindness from us, one single act, can impact another. That one word of kindness, that one loving action, may be the one that helps them turn the corner in their life.

And let us make no mistake, a single act of kindness is by no means a single act of kindness. It sends ripples out into the world, touching the lives of all of those in its wake in an ever-growing circle of grace. A ‘solitary’ act of kindness is like a single drop of rain in a paddy field, sending out ripples that effortlessly expand to its very banks.

If more people were kind more often, imagine what a different world this would be.

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Kindness being a choice we make in each moment, this is not just some impossible pipe dream too good to be true. We can create a world rooted in kindness, and the place to start is with ourselves.
I’m quite sure you’re already kind; because kindness, love and compassion seem to be impulses that are an intrinsic part of us. It’s like we have a compulsion deep within us to be kind. A need to allow this loving, compassionate part of us pour forth in words and actions that send ripples throughout the world – right to its very ‘banks.’

But however kind you already are, it is also true that you could choose right now to consciously sow more words and acts of kindness ‘on your turf.’

Try it and see how it makes the people around you feel.

See how it makes you feel.

See how your relationships blossom and your days grow in happiness, as you honour the divine spark of life in yourself and the divine spark of life in others in this way.

I can promise you the ripples will be far-reaching.

If enough of us commit to this we can transform the world, for we are the ones making the world in which we live – which means we are the ones with the power to change it.

I’d like to finish with the words of the Dalai Lama:
“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.”
This, for me, says it all.

Julia’s Pottery

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“Inner Giant” A Book About Bullying by Frank Letras

Could I not reblog this;)? Wonderful review for the project!

Between the Beats

Inner GiantInner Giant by Frank Letras
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I was looking for a book about bullying for my granddaughter when I came upon “Inner Giant” by Frank Letras. Bullying has become so prevalent in our society and has touched so many lives that I wanted to prepare her for the possibility it could happen to her. This is actually a collection of short stories, poetry, pictures, and so much more. The best part is that it is set up for adults and children in an easily identifiable format. I was amazed at the versatility of the information included. There were stories I could share with my 8-year old granddaughter as well as others appropriate for my 15-year old grandson. Some of the stories and art are amusing others very serious. With an easy to follow color coded guide I could choose what to share with either child…

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INTERVIEW WITH THE INNER GIANT

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(Photo by Natalija Bolfan Stosic)

In case you have seen posts about Inner Giant in the social networks, and kept wondering who or what it was, it’s time to reveal the secret. Chatting with me today is a longtime teacher and author colleague, Mr.Frank Letras. He will be talking about a wordlwide anti-bullying project called Inner Giant, which has resulted in an e-book with over 400 pages of stories, poems, songs, essays, advice, worksheets, teaching ideas, illustrations and photographs. All the contributors, myself included, have volunteered their work, regardless of their field of expertise (art, teaching, parenting, speech therapy, education, illustration, design, proofreading…) and Mr Letras is here today to tell us how and why.

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Inner Giant website
Inner Giant on Facebook
Esl.Printables teaching site
Frank’s blog
Teachers Without Borders

1. Before we begin talking about this huge project, tell us something about yourself, so our readers have an idea about the person behind the original idea for the project.

I am a writer by vocation, a teacher by choice, and a manager by neccessity. I am married and currently live in beautiful Surrey, about thirty miles from London. I was born in Portugal, and have lived in Britain,  Poland, and The USA, but not necessarily in that order. I am a member of an online teaching community which brings teachers from all over the world together, in order to solve any number of issues, primarily to create, and swap teaching materials and ideas, but every now and then, some extra curricular stuff, such as this project for example. I run an online radio station, and when I have the time, I broadcast regular music shows.

2. What is Inner Giant all about and what is its purpose?

Inner Giant is all about getting people to talk about the difficult subject of bullying. Especially victims, but also parents, teachers, and even bullies themselves. Bullying causes such long lasting and unnecessary pain and suffering, and often the victims and their parents are reluctanct to talk about it, as it appears to demonstrate a kind of weakness, or failing on their part.
The purpose of the project is to raise awareness, and to get people to talk about it more freely, and less self-consciously, thereby increasing the chances of preventing it from happening in the first place.

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(Target by Gerard Bullit)

3. Bullying, domestic and work violence, are not easy or popular topics to talk about. Being a parent and teacher yourself, why do you think it is important to talk about it and what can readers and supporters of the project do to help?

I will answer the second part of the question first. They can shout about it from every roof top, they can buy the book, use in school, as reading and/or teaching material, in order to help children, and indeed adults as well , lose their ‘fear’ of talking about bullying. Most instances of bullying stem from ignorance, jealousy, and fear. If enough people discuss the issues, often enough, those negative impulses will lessen, and bullying will be less evident. Because I agree that these are not easy topics of discussion is why I decided on this project. It is always easy to refer to a difficult subject in the third person. The book is a perfect tool for that.

4. The e-book consists of so much reading and inspiring material, and there are over 40 contributors altogether. Tell us something about them and their work, where they come from and how it was working with them all. Did you all have meetings to coordinate everything?

We have teachers and educators, painters, photographers and musicians from as far afield as Russia and Australia, Brasil and Egypt, Canada and Croatia. Getting that amount of creativity together is a logistical nightmare of gigantic proportions. Luckily we have been blessed with something called the internet. That, and the incredible organizational skills of this interviewer were the sole reason why this project ever materialised. I can safely say that there wasn’t one single instance when even two of the contributors occupied the same physical space and time. The ‘meetings’ consisted of long hours in front of a computer screen, and a mass of emails back and forth. I was particularly impressed by how willing people were to submit their contributions, and in the time frame they were given, which wasn’t always an easy thing to achieve. It was a priviledge to work with so many wonderful people, and I hope to do so again in the future.

5. A few years ago, you initiated a similar project Teaching Children from the Heart, on a smaller scale, but also for charity. What was that one all about and what happened to it?

Yes. It was called Teaching Children from the Heart, and it consisted of a few short stories and poems which we published as a paperback book. There were about twenty of us involved and the proceeds of that were donated to UNICEF. There was no particular topic for the book, we just wanted to have a lasting memento of the ESL Printables cafe gang as it was then, and to do something nice for charity. Alas, the company that published the book is no longer in business, and the only copies in existance are the ones that were sold. I pasted the link to the original book’s website above.

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(Book cover)

6. What was your favourite part in creating this book? Were there times you all felt like quitting? Do you think it was difficult for some contributors to share their experiences, as some stories and poems are based on true events?

My favourite part was seeing it all come together. As more and more stories were added to the formatting file, along with the accompanying images, I marvelled at how it just kept growing and growing. I was very dissapointed when the publishers informed me that to create an interactive e-book (which was the original intention) would be far too costly, pushing the retail price of the book so high that few people would buy it. This is the same reason why a printed version hasn’t been planned. The image content is so high that the printed book would have to retail at around sixty euros, making it far too expensive.
I think it was almost impossible for some of them.
A few started out almost as ‘ a friend of mine had this problem once’. Thinly disguised fiction rooted in fact and obviously painful personal experiences, most of which are very moving indeed.

7. How long did it take to have a finished e-book published and are you happy with it? Was it difficult to sort out the layout according to contributors? Did you have help from editors, publishers, book promotion companies?

From conception to publishing on Amazon, took exactly eleven months, two weeks, three days, seven hours, and forty three minutes. Not that I was counting, or anything. There were a few ‘differences of opinion’ , more about content, than layout. The publishers only part in the project was to format the submitted file into e-pub, and to put it on the book selling websites. Layout, formatting, and marketing are all down to us, but I have been very lucky with the amount of help provided by proof readers such as Michelle de Vries, technical advisors such as Gordana Palada, and Anita Kovacevic, who has been very helpful also.

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(Initial mock-up)

8. Who would you like to recommend the Inner Giant book to and why?

To every teacher who sees a student ‘withdrawing’ from lessons, or crying quietly in a corner, and wants to help. To every child who tortures his or herself with self-loathing and fear. To every parent who discovers that their baby is being victimised at school or on social media. To every teaching organisation who can use it to get people talking about the subject. To every person who feels that picking on someone else to make themselves feel better is the right way to live. To anyone who wants the bruises to dissapear from their soul forever.

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(Illustration by Dalibor Talajic for the story Dancing UK, by F. Letras)

9. If you could give a shout-out about Inner Giant to any famous person out there (even more than one), who would it be, why and what would you say?

There are many famous people who have been victims of bullying, and I would give a shout out to all of them, Hey, buy the book, read it, use it, and recommend it to others. There isn’t one particular celebrity that comes to mind at this point.

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(Painting by M.Letras)

10. What now? Is there talk of a launch party for the book, or continuing the project, or even a new project altogether?

There will be a launch party for the book. However the logistical nightmare continues. Principally how to get all the contributors in front of their computers at the same time.
The project will continue for as long as the book is on sale. A little early to start talking about a new project, but definitely not too early to think about it.

11. Would you like to add anything about the project or send a message to the readers?

BUY THE BOOK, IF YOU’VE BOUGHT IT, READ IT! IF YOU’VE READ IT, USE IT!
AND IF YOU’VE BOUGHT IT, READ IT, AND USED IT, THEN SELL IT TO AS MANY PEOPLE AS YOU CAN!

ABOUT THE INNER GIANT E-BOOK

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(e-book cover)

E-book on Amazon UK

E-book on Amazon Spain

Also available in all other Amazon affiliates.

BOOK DESCRIPTION 

Inner Giant is much more than a book, it is a journey through the lives and experiences of its creators. It contains over twenty short stories written by a variety of authors, introduced by two fictional school boys adding a touch of humour and irony to the stories.
The second part contains poetry of all shapes and sizes, conceived by different, but talented poets.
There are several other parts to the book, each crammed with illustrations, photographs, paintings, essays, lesson materials and pieces of sound advice.
All the material in the book has one message, do not stand for bullying, do not stand by bullying and do not bully others.
The profits from the book are being donated to anti-bullying organizations. Making this unique work a must read for all. It’s time you found your own Inner Giant.

SNEAK PEEKS

Here is a short paragraph from Victoria’s legacy letter;
I teach my sons not to stand by passively and watch other children bullied . I always say” if you are a bystander,you are as guilty as the person who is doing it.
Be courageous to step up and say,”This is NOT accepted. This is NOT ok.”
And if you are being  bullied,ask for help,tell somebody.”

This is the last paragraph in the book taken from Anita’s closing words.

You may read this book and do nothing about it. You may say your money contribution by buying the book is enough and you’ve done your part. You may recommend the book to someone else, read them a story, use an essay as a teaching tool, email someone a poem or two, take some of our advice or even add some of your own. You may invite and inspire people to do good, to be good, to teach good. The choice is yours. You may help a bullied person find inner strength and change from a victim to a protector. You yourself may change from a witness to a protector. You may even help a bully control and conquer their own demon and become a protector themselves.
You never know till you try. Giants do not only exist in fairytales, but in our souls as well. Find and keep your own inner giant, and show it with pride. And share it with pride.

(Frank has enclosed his personal favourite images from the book and one of the early ones that wasn’t used.)

Please rate and review this book on Amazon! You will show the world this problem matters and you will have the gratitude of 40something people who participated in this!

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