Fantasy Friday – You Might Like to Know …


Lots going on in the world of fantasy.

First, Wayne Thomas Batson and Christopher Hopper are running a couple interesting promotional events in preparation for the release of their co-authored book, Curse of the Spider King, book 1 of their series The Berinfell Prophecies (Thomas Nelson).

First is a campaign to blitz Amazon on October 7 with pre-orders. This is particularly aimed at readers who are already planning to purchase the book, but I suspect new readers will also be welcome. πŸ˜‰

Before this first, they launched a forum to discuss the books in this new series β€” The Underground.

More recently they revealed a huge, giganto, fun, exciting contest they’re running to help get the word out about the book. They’re calling it, Build Your Tribe, Begin Your Quest. Sounds cool! 😎 And one of the prizes? A personal book signing party with lots of freebies for the winner!

And finally, they’re holding several extravaganza-type launch events. In Maryland, they’re speaking, signing, and performing at various places on October 16 and 17. In New York, they’ll be doing the same October 30 and 31.

By the way, the CSFF blog tour will be featuring Curse of the Spider King in November. I’m looking forward to reading this YA fantasy.

Speaking of tours and contests, Donita Paul has announced the closing date of her library contest for The Vanishing Sculptor. From her newsletter:

Library Contest
The library contest finally has an end date:
November 20, 2009

Why November 20? Because it is Mrs. Paul’s birthday, and we think it would be fun to give something away on her birthday. πŸ˜€

The Contest Image Gallery is almost complete, but we need more pictures of YOU (and your librarians)!

Remember your camera (or use your camera phone) next time you go to the library and get a picture of you with Mrs. Paul’s books on the shelves. Be creative! We want to see your faces!

NEW CONTEST RULE: You will be entered up to two times for each picture of faces you submit to webmaster@dragonkeeper.us.

If you have already submitted pictures or screenshots–thank you! They have likely been received. Our webmaster is working hard at getting them entered into the gallery, so your patience will soon be rewarded.

What else? There’s a new Christian fantasy forum called Holy Worlds.

Rachel Star Thomson won the September CSFF Top Blogger Award. Congratulations, Rachel!

Marcher Lord Press announced their new line of books/authors with special pricing if you purchase a number together.

Starlighter, first in the Dragons of Starlight series by Bryan Davis (Zondervan), can now be pre-ordered. Here’s the blurb from Bryan’s newsletter:

Jason Masters has heard his older brother Adrian’s tales about dragons kidnapping humans. Supposedly, almost one hundred years ago, a dragon stole away several humans and enslaved them on its own planet. These Lost Ones, as Adrian called them, live terrible lives as cattle. Yet, the Underground Gateway, the portal to the dragon planet, still exists somewhere, and a secret society of the same name has long tried to find it so they can rescue the Lost Ones.

When Adrian leaves to find the portal, Jason takes his place as the Governor’s bodyguard. Although the government has tried to cover up the evidence, he learns that the legends are true, and after being accused of murder and learning that Adrian’s life is in danger, he has to conduct his own search for the portal, a journey filled with danger and intrigue.

Aided by a gifted young lady named Elyssa and an eccentric escapee from the dungeon named Tibalt, Jason ventures into the wilderness to locate Adrian and the Lost Ones. Yet, what he finds on the dragon planet proves to the biggest surprise of all. Koren, a lonely slave girl, is a powerful being called a Starlighter, the slaves’ only hope for survival and rescue, though most refuse to believe that their ancestors ever came from another planet.

D. Barkley Briggs, author of The Book of Names, announced good news about his second (and, sadly, orphaned) book (NavPress is no longer publishing fiction):

UPDATE: I am securing all rights back from Navpress as we speak. Once the paper work is finalized, I hope to locate another publisher soon. How soon? Don’t know, but I’ve had a couple of random inquiries with no real effort on my part, so I’m hopeful. Please be patient. My personal schedule is tied up until at least the first of October. The good news in all of this is that Books 1-3 are complete! They just need a home.

I suspect there is more news in fantasy, but that should do it for today.

CSFF Tour Wrap – The Vanishing Sculptor


Another tour over. The Vanishing Sculptor was definitely a fun one, with author Donita Paul commenting on a number of blogs. There were interviews, reviews, summaries, bios, discussions about humor in fantasy, themes, and characters. There was even a quiz. A total of 35 blogs participated, with 56 posts.

Unless I’ve overlooked someone, the participants’ list is now updated and accurate, so if you haven’t had a chance to read all the articles you’d like to, take some time this week and check out the thoughts of others about this more-complex-than-meets-the-eye story.

You might want to start with those eligible for the September CSFF Top Blogger Award (and then vote – πŸ˜€ ):

Published in: on September 24, 2009 at 1:39 pm  Comments Off on CSFF Tour Wrap – The Vanishing Sculptor  
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Covers and Contest – CSFF Blog Tour, The Vanishing Sculptor, Day 2


The CSFF Blog tour for Donita Paul‘s The Vanishing Sculptor has me thinking about book covers, but I also want to tell you about a contest, so here we go.

Cover Design/Illustration: Mark D. Ford

Cover Design/Illustration: Mark D. Ford

I am about the worst person in the world when it comes to noticing book covers. I don’t understand this because I consider myself more strongly a visual learner, so why don’t the visuals of a book immediately attract me? They don’t. Neither do titles.

Case in point, our current feature, The Vanishing Sculptor. Do you have any idea how long it took me just to remember the title? I kept thinking The Vanishing Sepulcher for some reason. Not until I started typing the title out did it really stick.

And then there’s the cover. Todayβ€”yes, TODAYβ€”I read a comment over at Rachel Starr Thomson’s blog that mentioned the dragon on the cover, and I thought, Huh? What dragon? If you’d asked me what was on the cover, I’d have said something in greens and burgundy. 😳

But now, as I look at the cover, really look, I see how cute and completely right it is for the story. There’s a promise of fun and adventure and imaginationβ€”just what the book delivers.

So my question. How important are covers to you when you’re considering a book to read or buy? And are we going to lose the enticement of covers as books move to the electronic media, or will the enticement of video trailers replace what covers once did (for some people πŸ˜› )?

On to the contest (and there is no connection between covers and contest except for the alliteration and cool sound of the two said together πŸ˜€ ).

Now as I look at the details, I’m wondering if the contest has ended. I’m referring to Donita Paul’s The Vanishing Sculptor’s Library Proofs Contest, Summer 2009.

It’s a great marketing idea. Those wishing to participate simply had to provide proof that their local library has a copy of The Vanishing Sculptor or that the participant made a request for the library to acquire the book.

I was going to suggest fans take this challenge to heart … except, today is the official beginning of autumn, so I’m wondering if the contest is over.

Even if it is, I think it’s a worthy endeavor to suggest books to librarians. And I don’t think we should stop at public libraries. Talk to school librarians and church librarians.

OK, to wrap up today’s tour post, let me suggest a few others you may want to check out.

Karina Fabian has an interview with Donita Paul
Jill Williamson has a DragonKeeper Chronicles quiz you can take.
Emmalyn Edwards takes a close look at the characters.
Fred Warren posted a great review, dealing especially with a principal theme of the book.
Wayne Thomas Batson posts Donita’s testimony and gives a personal anecdote from the West Coast Fantasy Tour a year ago.

You can see all the participants listed with links to their articles in the Day 1 post.

Published in: on September 22, 2009 at 11:06 am  Comments (7)  
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CSFF Blog Tour – The Vanishing Sculptor, Day 1


Announcements. Lots going on, so lest I forget, I want to take care of business before moving onto Donita Paul and her latest release, The Vanishing Sculptor (WaterBrook).

First, I’m still looking for help with a book title. If you haven’t given feedback yet and would like to, you’ll find the poll at Fantasy Friday – I Need Your Help. The poll will be open through this week.

Also we’re accepting nominations for the 2009 Clive Staples Award for Christian Speculative Fiction. The developing list is posted here at A Christian Worldview of Fiction and also at the Award site.

Third, the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) held their awards ceremony this past weekend. Congratulations to Sharon Hinck, winner of the Book of the Year Award – Speculative, for The Restorer’s Journey, and to David Fry, winner of the Genesis Contest – SciFi/Allegory/Fantasy, for Lies to See. Great accomplishments! πŸ˜€

There is one other award I want to mention in particular, but I’ll get to that.

The Tour. As I’ve stated from time to time, the CSFF Blog Tour got it’s start when Donita Paul took a chance on us, sending a group of 17 bloggers copies of DragonKnight, book 3 in her DragonKeeper Chronicles series. Actually, that tour was our second, the first featuring Tim Frankovich’s excellent site Christian Fiction Review with his “Focus on Fantasy” section. But with Donita’s tour, word seemed to spread like wildfire, and today CSFF has nearly 150 members, and monthly 35 or more participating blogs.

I think, in part, the growth was due to Donita’s gracious participation in the tour, beyond providing books. She conducted interviews, too, and stopped by our blogs to comment. As I look at it, she set the gold standard for author involvement in blog tours. For example, she left comments on each of my tour posts, and came back to answer questions others left her.

Here’s her initial comment to the Day 1 post:

Becky, this is such a great idea! I had a hard time envisioning just what-all a blog tour encompassed. I was just talking to a sales rep from WaterBrook and told him what a fantastic job you all are doing on the grassroots level. Believe me, the grassroots level is what starts the fires that spread from reader to reader.

The encouragement was great, the review copies of the book were great, the interaction with a published author was great.

So, bringing us back to the present, it was no surprise to me to learn that the ACFW Mentor of the Year award went to Donita Paul! Sky-writing sized congratulations!

I hope visitors here at A Christian Worldview of Fiction learn a lot about Donita and her writing during these next three days. If you haven’t read any of her books yet, The Vanishing Sculptor might be the perfect one to start with. It’s the beginning of a new series and a sort of prequel to the DragonKeeper Chronicles. But I’ll get into book specifics another day.

For now, take some time to visit other blogs participating in the tour:

http://anewnovelistsjourney.blogspot.com/2009/09/csff-blog-tour-vanishing-sculptor-by.html

Published in: on September 21, 2009 at 11:58 am  Comments (15)  
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