Archives for posts with tag: Spanish language
English: bookshop in port Melbourne

English: bookshop in port Melbourne (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mis padres siempre me han contado que cuando era pequeña, antes de aprender a leer, yo siempre me empeñaba en querer saber lo que ponía en los anuncios y señales y en cualquier cosa que tuviera algo escrito. Más tarde, cuando aprendí a leer, me convertí en una lectora empedernida. Mi escuela era pequeña, una escuela de barrio (que ha desaparecido como muchas otras cosas) y no tenía su propia biblioteca, pero los lectores nos solíamos prestar e intercambiar libros y leíamos de todo, desde ‘Los Famosos Cinco’ y la serie de Aventuras (de Enid Blyton, que yo siempre preferí. Me gustaba el loro) a ‘Tiburón’, Oscar Wilde, Edgar Allan Poe, Gustavo Adolfo Becquer o Mercé Rodoreda.

Siempre he preferido que me regalen libros a cualquier otra cosa (casi) y me siguen gustando.

En cuanto a libros se refiere soy como una polilla atraída hacia la luz. Si veo libros en cualquier sitio, iré a echar un vistazo, no importa donde sea: un supermercado, un mercadillo, el aeropuerto…Y por supuesto, me encantan las librerías, aunque parece que el negocio no va muy bien y han cambiado mucho. Y sí, ahora tenemos las grandes cadenas de librerías, algo anónimas pero normalmente con mucha variedad, no solo de libros sino también de otras cosas, las pequeña librería especializada, las librerías independientes, las que venden libros de segunda mano que son como máquinas del tiempo.

Debido a mi trabajo ha habido épocas de mi vida cuando he viajado bastante y una de las cosas que mejor suelo recordar de los lugares donde he vivido (o he visitado) es dónde están (o estaban) las librerías. Y debo reconocer que me siento muy desilusionada cuando vuelvo a visitar algún lugar familiar y descubro que una de mis librerías favoritas ha desaparecido. Es como perder a un viejo amigo. Con respecto a las librerías, como pasa con la mayoría de cosas importantes en la vida, no son todas iguales.

Pensando en eso, quería preguntaros a vosotros, lectores, si pudierais hacer aparecer, como por arte de magia, la librería de vuestros sueños, ¿cómo sería? ¿Sería enorme con un poco de todo? ¿O pequeña pero muy especial? ¿Vendería solo libros u otros objetos relacionados (DVDs, lectores electrónicos, libros en audio, revistas y papelería, otro equipamiento…)? ¿Vendería otro tipo de cosas (postales, artesanía y objetos de decoración, juguetes…)? ¿Tendría también cafetería? ¿Organizaría eventos (lecturas y firma de libros, clubs de lectores, competiciones, otro tipo de invitados…)? ¿Vendería solo libros nuevos, o también de segunda mano, tendría una sección para intercambiar libros…? ¿Libros en varios idiomas? ¿Best-sellers y libros no tan conocidos o independientes, libros de interés local y especializados? ¿Ofrecería otros servicios como Wi-fi y tienda digital? ¿Y dónde estaría? ¿En un lugar plácido y remoto, o a la vuelta de la esquina, en el centro de la ciudad, en un centro comercial, o en un rincón escondido y mágico?

¡Soñad! ¡Que es gratis (de momento)!

Y pensando en librerías y en las fotos que me envió de una de sus librerías favoritas una autora amiga, empecé un tablero (board) en Pinterest, y una vez allí encontré mucha gente compartiendo fotos fabulosas.

Echadle un vistazo a ver que os parece, y si os apetece añadir vuestros pins, si estáis en Pinterest os invito a que añadáis los vuestros.

http://www.pinterest.com/olganm7/bookstores-booshops-and-interesting-shops/

¡Gracias por leer, y os ha gustado recordad darle al like, comentad, y compartid!

Como todos los viernes toca autor invitado. Hoy tenemos a Pablo Canales Gil que nos viene a hablar de dos de sus obras: Las Singulares Aventuras de Arnaldo y Jerodani y La dimensión soñada (Primera Parte: Revelaciones)

Pero primero, conozcamos un poco sobre Pablo:

Pablo Canales Gil

  • En mi Andalucía natal el sol brilla más que en el resto de España o, al menos, eso me parece a mí. Esa luz esplendorosa ilumina con su magia nuestra mente y nos hace concebir sueños hermosos que arrastramos durante toda nuestra vida, como en mi caso. Mi sueño fue ser escritor desde los once años, en los que ya escribía algunos relatos. Pero no pudo ser porque a esa edad empecé a trabajar para llevar algo de dinero a casa.
  • A estas alturas tengo todo el tiempo del mundo y voy a dedicarlo a mi hobby favorito. Por de pronto, autoedité un eBook titulado LAS SINGULARES AVENTURAS DE ARNALDO, y recientemente he incorporado JERODANI. LA DIMENSIÓN SOÑADA (1ª Parte: REVELACIONES), cuyos enlaces copio para que, si queréis, os los podáis descargar. Gracias a todos por su atención y muchas más por leer mis libros. Y recordarlo siempre: la luz de Andalucía es mágica o, al menos, eso os parecerá cuando visitéis esta tierra por primera vez. Nos vemos.

Y si no podéis visitar Andalucía en un futuro próximo, al menos podéis consolaros leyendo las novelas de Pablo.

Las Singulares Aventuras de Arnaldo y Jerodani

Las singulares aventuras

Es una novela de trepidantes aventuras, ambientada en tiempos remotísimos. Tiene mucho de cómic pero sin viñetas.

Cuando los dioses del Olimpo y otras deidades menores regían los destinos de los humanos, aparece un aguerrido jovenzuelo que libera a Buenomox, un genio que cumple una condena impuesta por su despótico rey Malomox. Con esta buena acción Arnaldo se gana la animadversión del rey de los genios. Ayudado por su esposa, una terrible bruja llamada Fulminancia, procuran por todos los medios su perdición. Ambos son aliados del Señor de los Abismos Insondables, el cual los apoya en sus malévolos fines. Sin embargo, Arnaldo sale inmune de los ataques que le dirigen gracias a la ayuda de Aristóbulo, un joven y apuesto mago que cabalga en busca de su misterioso Destino. Los dos deciden viajar juntos después de verse inmersos en una peligrosa aventura, acompañados siempre por Colalarga, un hermoso colley tricolor al que Aristóbulo, con su magia, hace que hable, y una especie de duendecillo de dos palmos de altura que efectúa brincos de varios metros. Colalarga y el duendecillo brincador protagonizan divertidos episodios al existir entre ellos una evidente rivalidad. También Malomox y Fulminancia, de puro malos, ocasionan incidentes risibles.

Por favor, adéntrense en las páginas de esta novela y verán que no falta en ellas la intriga, la emoción y el humor más disparatado pero dosificado. Disfrutarán con su lectura y se la recomendarán a sus mejores amigos.

http://www.amazon.es/LAS-SINGULARES-AVENTURAS-ARNALDO-ebook/dp/B0098ZXUPU

 

La dimensión soñada (Primera Parte: Revelaciones)

Jerodani

¿Queréis conocer a Jerodani, un joven de excepcional belleza que práctica el sexo con una sabiduría infinita, capaz de satisfacer a las más exigentes? Aterrizaréis en su época infantil, en la que ya destaca por sus asombrosas y atrevidas aventuras, y sin daros cuenta entraréis en su particular mundo juvenil, donde su lucha por la supervivencia es permanente. Desde allí os trasladaréis a su período adulto, el más dramático, apasionado e interesante de su vida.

Desde siempre la existencia de Jerodani es enrevesada. Sin embargo, a lo largo de ella le ocurren cosas maravillosas que le hacen olvidar en parte las calamidades padecidas. Cosas deliciosas, como sus aventuras amorosas. Cosas atípicas, como su amistad con un ente incorpóreo que le guarda las espaldas y, de paso, le revela en qué ocupan su ilimitado tiempo los espíritus.

Jerodani es víctima del odio desmedido de un canallesco personaje que quiere acabar con su familia, lo que consigue a medias. Por otro lado, su sorprendente apostura y encanto suponen un irresistible reclamo para las mujeres de su entorno, que caen en sus brazos sin remisión posible, hasta que encuentra a la que tenía concebida en su mente desde pequeño y, en ardientes encuentros, logra que recupere la felicidad perdida. En medio de esta vorágine de pasiones desatadas, su acérrimo enemigo, ayudado por sus secuaces, le acecha en las sombras y todos esperan la ocasión propicia para caer sobre él como fieras sedientas de sangre.

Jerodani es una novela diferente, donde la fantasía se mezcla con el sexo de una manera única, fresca y original.

http://www.amazon.com//dp/B00C4JL5ZY/

Gracias por leer, y si os ha gustado, compartid y haced CLIC!

If you loved Lost in Translation, you should read this!

Loosely translated
I am Spanish and write in Spanish and English, although because I live and work in the UK I do most of my writing in English now. When I read about the subject matter of the book I knew I should read it and I’m happy I did.
You have an English author, Mike Grey, who’s become stuck in a rut writing misogynistic detective novels, that at face value appear not to be worth the paper (yes, paperbacks, not digital) they’re written in. He’s threatened with discontinuation of the series by the publishers but cannot get motivated to change. Then suddenly, luck strikes. A Spanish publishing company decides to translate his books and they become a great success. He’s invited to a book signing in Madrid and meets a fascinating, puzzling, annoying and lovely woman, Maria, whom he initially thinks is only interpreting for him and later realises is the person who has translated his now successful book to Spanish. Maria is an unpublished writer, talented, and frustrated. She decides to do the translation as a chance to try and get attention for her own writing. She’s so appalled at the poor quality of Mike’s novel that she starts making ‘improvements’, amongst them, turning Mike’s detective protagonist, Eric, into Erica.
Maria has to try and avoid both the readers and Mike discovering her ruse, and she manages quite well. Although she despises Mike’s writing she discovers he’s not that bad and eventually things develop…Yes, in the direction you imagine. But as you know the course of true love never runs smooth and misunderstandings and confusion abound. Other people come in the way, translations and miscommunications get even more complicated, trips to and fro abound, and author’s egos are bruised but eventually healed.
Mr Wheeler has written a solid comedy of errors, with good and likeable (flawed but more human for it) main characters, some fabulous secondary characters (I love Maria’s father, her aunt, and the barber/Spanish teacher), and scenes that will make you cringe and laugh in equal measures. The writing is fresh, well paced, adapted to the different characters and surroundings, and it shows a deep understanding (and dare I say love?) for the cities and subjects it touches. We laugh at the world of publishing and writing from the inside, but we also wonder and marvel at is power and magic. You’ll be sorry once it finishes as you’ll feel Mike and Mary have become your friends, but don’t worry, there are plenty of epilogues to keep you going!
I recommend this novel to anybody with a sense of humour, particularly if you love books, and if you’ve ever tried to translate something, this should be compulsory reading! I look forward to reading more of Mr Wheeler’s books.

If you’ve liked what you’ve read, check it out. Please share and CLICK!

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009Y3BGTS/

Is translating an art? I would say it depends on what you’re translating, but it can be. Is it curious? I find it so.

I’m from Barcelona and speak (and write) Spanish and Catalan (Catalan although I’ve always spoken it was not officially taught when I was very young due to…politics and the government of General Franco. That’s not terribly relevant to the post, but I’m gifted, or plagued, with lateral thinking processes). I studied French at school for a few years and then English at High School. I moved to the UK in 1992 and since I’ve spent most of my life speaking, reading and writing in English (although of course Spanish and Catalan are also there). Even my fiction, that I started writing in one form or another when I was very young, moved from strictly Spanish (less often Catalan) to English.

Now as you know I’ve taken up self-publishing some of my stories, and as part of the process I’m doing some translating. Sometimes in either direction, mostly from English to Spanish. I decided to have guest authors in my blog and as I had been posting in both Spanish and English, I’d also translated the guest posts from either Spanish to English or the other way round, depending on the main language of the guest.

It is a rewarding and sometimes difficult task. I’ve come to love the fact that you get to know the original material much better than you would do otherwise. You go through it with a fine toothcomb, trying to find expressions that might mean the same or something equivalent in the other language, and sometimes you need to determine what’s exactly being said.

Interviews in general I don’t find too difficult. Actual samples of a book are much more precious, as not only content but style come into play and some of the author’s decisions you might not agree with, or might not be easily (if at all) translatable into the other language. And what about the titles? I find titles particularly challenging. Sometimes I give up and leave the original, but even then, if it’s not just a name, I’ll try to provide a translation (in order to at least give some information to the reader). But how to know if that would be the other person’s choice?

I have written a Young Adult novel, the first in a (somewhat) planned series and decided I was going to translate it from English to Spanish. Well, it’s not that difficult when it’s your own book, because at least you know what you’re trying to say. Or so I thought. And of course, I started with the title. Angelic Business 1. Pink Matters. 1 is easy. Does not need translation. Angelic pretty straight forward too (Angélico or Angélicos if plural). But Business. Several meanings. Did I want business as an enterprise, the world of business, or as a matter (“none of your business”) kind of thing? Negocios Angélicos? I finally decided (so far) to go with Asuntos Angélicos.

English: rose bunch, Rosa sp. cultivars, flowe...

English: rose bunch, Rosa sp. cultivars, flower market, Place Monge, Paris Français : bouquet de roses, Rosa sp. horticoles, marché aux fleurs, Place Monge, Paris (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But that was nothing compare with ‘Pink Matters’. Pink is the name of the main character (she’s named Petra but hates her name and as she likes the pink colour, she goes by Pink). Pink (the colour) in Spanish is rosa (as a colour). But Rosa is also a name (Rose). But I didn’t want Rosa, so I decided to stick with Pink. No reason why children reading this book (I’m not specific about the setting but it’s a world with High Schools and football players, so)  would not know enough English to know what Pink is, and of course there’s also the singer. And ‘matters’? Matter again could be a thing to talk about…(sort of ‘related’ to Pink) but I like the possible double meaning, as in, the girl, Pink, matters, is important. She’s the centre of the novel. I could not think of any word similar in Spanish and I wanted to keep the symmetry. I didn’t fancy using several words and making it a really long title. So far I’m working with ‘Alerta Pink’ (yes, Pink Alert) that’s fairly different, but I like the interplay with red alert. (Alerta Roja in Spanish). And all this for only 4 words and a number. Can you imagine the whole process? Of course, the title is very important and I hope I won’t agonise so much over the rest of the book but…(so far I’ve only translated a chapter and a bit, but I’m currently translating a book from Spanish to English for somebody else. Challenging indeed!)

Yes, I would say it is a curious art, don’t you think?

Thanks for reading!

Como casi todos los viernes, os traigo un autor invitado. Hoy los lectores del género de terror disfrutarán especialmente la visita de Alexander Beresford. Aquí os dejo con él.

1.¿Cómo empezaste a escribir?

Desde que recuerdo me han gustado siempre los libros. Mi madre solía leerme de pequeño y siempre estábamos rodeados de libros, pero lo que me animó a querer escribir fue ver a Stephen R Donaldson que vino a hacer una lectura de su novela ‘The One Tree’ a la biblioteca de mi instituto. Después de oírle hablar, supe que quería ser escritor. Me puse en contacto con él recientemente para agradecerle la inspiración.

2. ¿Por qué novelas de terror?

Durante mucho tiempo tuve problemas para decidirme sobre qué quería escribir. Al principio quería escribir algo profundo, con significado, una obra importante, algo que pudiera ayudar a la gente. Así que después de ganar un concurso de historias cortas publiqué una colección de historias cortas y una novela corta con una micro-editorial. Estas obras nunca llegaron a ningún sitio y las publiqué bajo pseudónimo. Al cabo de un par de años decidí olvidarme del empeño de producir algo importante y decidí escribir algo divertido. Mi pasión, que me viene de niño, es leer viejos comics de terror, como Eerie, Pesadilla, Vampirella…Estos comics pertenecían al hermano mayor de mi mejor amigo. Al final me dio la mayor parte de su colección y los atesoré durante muchos años.

3 ¿ Cuáles son tus libros favoritos? ¿Cuál es tu libro de terror favorito

Me gusta todo tipo de libros. Mis favoritos son ‘El señor de los anillos’, ‘Todos los nombres’ de Jose Saramago, ‘the Tao of Pooh’, Cliver Barker’s ‘Hellbound’ y ‘The Stand’ the Stephen King que me impresionó mucho cuando lo leí en el instituto. Hasta que fui al instituto había llevado una vida muy protegida, confortable, de clase social media-alta, y ‘The Stand’ me permitió echarle un vistazo a una realidad más cruda, no la realidad apocalíptica, por supuesto, pero me hizo darme cuenta de que cierto tipo de personajes existen, y de lo que la gente puede ser capaz en ciertas circunstancias. Me hizo mirar a la gente de forma diferente, me hizo volver más cauto con unos y más agradecido con otros. Me hizo madurar.

4. ¿Cuál es tu tipo favorito de novela de terror?

Me gustan las novelas psicológicas, paranormales, algunas del género erótico de terror. No me gustan demasiado las tipo slasher (destripamiento) excesivamente violentas, gore, y terror sangriento.

5. ¿Cuál es tu película de terror favorita?

Omen’, ‘El Exorcista’ (la original). ‘Tiburón’.

6. Explícanos tu proceso para crear ‘Charla’.

Siempre guardo notas sobre ideas diferentes para libros, historias cortas, guiones, y Charla nació de la idea para un guión que tuve hace mucho tiempo. Al principio la historia estaba centrada en Amelia, su hija, pero cuando empecé a escribirla, Charla se puso al mando y era tan poderosa que decidí darle su nombre al libro.

Me gusta empezar con un plan muy general, no puedo trabajar con un guión muy detallado porque me aburre, siento como si la historia ya estuviese escrita. En cambio con un plan general tengo la libertad de incorporar material nuevo aunque sin dejar de seguir las líneas generales. Tampoco me gusta hablar de mis obras en preparación porque también me siento como si la obra ya estuviese escrita si paso mucho tiempo repitiendo lo mismo a mis amistades, así que normalmente nadie lo ve hasta que al menos he terminado el primer borrador.

7. ¿Cómo publicaste tu primera novela de terror, Charla?

Hice una lista de agentes y editoriales, busqué algo de información básica sobre cada uno de ellos, seguí las pautas de presentación al pie de la letra (para qué alienarlos) y empecé a enviar material como una máquina, cada día. Cada día buscaba algo más de información y encontraba uno o dos más a quienes enviarles material. Fechaba cada envío en mi lista. Algunos decían: “le responderemos en dos meses” o “en tres”. Me apuntaba esa fecha, y si no había recibido respuesta alguna, volvía a enviarles el material como si no lo hubiese hecho antes. Tuve algunas respuestas, y entré en comunicación con un par de editoriales, una de ellas es ahora mi editorial. Tan pronto como un agente o editorial me pedía más material, yo me informaba más a fondo, para saber mejor con quién estaba hablando. Al final tuve muchos rechazos y cuatro editoriales estaban interesadas en Charla. Una de ellas cambió de opinión después de una reunión interna, ya que decidieron que Charla no encajaba con su audiencia. Así que me quedé con tres. Como escritor me interesaba el negocio a largo plazo, así que me decidí por la editorial que me pareció me sería más útil como escritor novicio. Publicar no es fácil, pero si quieres que te publiquen, tienes que se persistente.

8. ¿De dónde sacas las ideas para tus historias?

La vida. Cosas de cada día. De preguntarme “ ¿Qué pasaría si…?” De dar vuelo libre a mi imaginación. Soñar despierto. Pesadillas..

9. ¿Cuál es tu siguiente proyecto?

Tengo otra novela a punto de publicarse en el otoño que se llama “Doll Face” (Cara de Muñeca). Publicaré una historia corta en Kindle llamada “Little Thing” (Cosita) o “Sandra” aún no lo he decidido. Y también hay proyecto de película para “Charla”, en proceso de casting. Es muy excitante pero no puede contaros más por ahora. Os invito a mi página de Facebook donde podéis poneros al día de mis proyectos. De hecho ya tengo un poster de “Doll Face” pronto a la venta, allí www.facebook.com/alexandertberesford

Gracias por invitarme a compartir con lectores y amigos y por la oportunidad de hacer nuevos amigos…Lo agradezco mucho.

charla cover1[1]

Aquí os dejo enlaces a su novela en edición electronica

http://www.amazon.com/Charla-ebook/dp/B007RMZZ3Q/

Y de papel

http://http://http://www.amazon.com/Charla-Alexander-Beresford/dp/0983377340/

Y no os olvidéis de hacer click!

Muchísimas gracias Alexander, y mucha suerte!

                       

Alexander Beresford

Alexander Beresford

Works at AuthorStudied Creative Writing at FIULives in Miami, Florida

Hi all:

I mentioned that I’m working on a YA series (and I’m in the process of translating it to Spanish) but as an introduction to that I’ve decided to publish (within the next few weeks) a YA novella that I wrote some time ago. It has a touch of the paranormal and a bit of romance although that is not yet evident in the little taster/teaser I enclose.

I hope you enjoy it! I’ll keep you updated on its publication.

And without further ado, here it is:

Twin Evils?

Hilda’s friend, Ruth, was the prettiest and loveliest girl in town. Her blond hair was fine and silky, her eyes blue like sapphires, her mouth red like coral. She would have been chanted by the poets of old if she’d lived in a different time. Ruth was the pride and darling of Yorktown. And she was clever enough, and generous and kind. She had it all.

Ruth had a brother too. Max was her twin, but hardly anybody would have guessed that they were related. He was very tall and thin, his hair was thick, curly and black like coal, his eyes grey like slate, and his mouth had thin lips that hardly ever smiled. He was the black sheep of the family, and Ruth and him were known as ‘the angel and the devil’ by the population.

Hilda had known them both all her life. They were the same age, and, in fact, their families were friendly before they were even born. Their parents used to go out on double dates and they got married on a double wedding. They lived in contiguous houses and it was as if they were all members of the same family. Hilda had always felt that it was her duty to befriend Ruth and Max. The task had been very easy with Ruth, she was friendly with everybody, but Max wasn’t an easy boy. As a child, when they played together, he used to torture animals, insects, fight with other children…Ruth always shied away from him, she couldn’t bear any type of violence, but Hilda wasn’t squeamish, and Max had always assumed that Hilda approved of what he did. She told him many times that she didn’t like his behaviour but he insisted that her words were only a pose. Max was always as nasty as he could be towards his sister. He put dead animals in her bed, maggots in her food, ruined her dresses…Once Hilda stopped him when he was about to set his sleeping sister’s hair on fire. Ruth woke up with the discussion and slapped him when she heard what he was about to do, but he only laughed. No threats from Ruth, no warnings from his parents, no punishment from his teachers made any difference to him.

The summer of the twins’ seventeenth birthday, Max had given everybody a break by deciding to go camping with some other youngsters. They had had two weeks of peace, and the two families had been preparing the twins’ birthday party at ease, in perfect tranquillity.

“Hilda! Hilda!”

“Oh no, he’s back” Hilda’s father, Steph, mumbled under his breath.

“Hilda!”

“Go to see what he wants, before we all end up deaf or mad.” Mandy, Hilda’s mother, ordered.

“All right, all right. I’ll go.”

“Hilda!”

Hilda marched into the garden feeling like a martyr. The sacrifices she had to make to keep the peace! Max was restlessly running up and down his garden. He opened his mouth and began:

“Hi…Oh, you are here.”

Yes, Max. Here I am. Do you always have to be so noisy?”

“Shut up! I must show you something.” He grabbed Hilda by the arm and dragged her over the fence.

“Be careful, will you?”

“Sorry. Come, quick.”

Hilda and Max entered the house through the back door of the lounge, opening into the garden. Hilda said hello in passing to Max’s mother, Eleanor, and his father, Patrick. Ruth was sitting in her room, with the door open.

“Oh Ruth, how…?”

Max pushed Hilda into his room.

“Don’t talk to her. You aren’t here to talk to her. You’ve come to see something.”

“When will you grow up, Max? I’m your sister’s friend too, and…”

“Stop it, please. Look…”

Max switched the lights on. His room was painted in black, walls and ceiling, with strange cabalistic inscriptions and devilish drawings. It was always dark inside. Once he made light, he took his T-shirt off and showed Hilda his back.

“What do you think?”

Hilda was speechless. It was an incredible tattoo. A black eagle, with spread wings, attacking a white dove. The eagle’s beak was dripping blood, and the red colour of the tattoo was very intense, quasi pulsating. The dove had blue eyes and was carrying a branch of wheat. The eagle’s eyes were grey and the wings looked shiny and iridescent. It was an extremely vivid tattoo. And the meaning was too clear for Hilda to be able to ignore it. Max always called Ruth ‘the white dove’. It was horrible.

“Why did you do that, Max?”

“There was a guy incredibly good with tattoos nearby. It’s my own design.”

“I’ve noticed that.”

“Why don’t you like it? Isn’t it good?”

“It’s good. Real good. But, what does it mean?”

“Mean?…Nothing. It’s only a tattoo.”

Max tried his most innocent expression, but it didn’t come natural to him. Not convincing at all.

“I don’t like the imagery.” Ruth said.

“Imagery. Lovely word. I love how you talk, like a book.”

“Bye Max.”

Ruth turned her back on Max and stepped toward the door.

“Wait, wait! I have another tattoo!”

“If it’s like this one I’d rather not see it, thank you.”

“Oh no, it’s very different. Guess where it is.”

Ruth had stopped and turned to look at Max, but shook her head and carried walking.

“I’m not interested in games, Max. I have things to do.”

Max ran to the door to prevent Hilda from leaving.

“Come on…I’ve been away for two weeks and you haven’t even asked me how it was or how I am, or nothing. I’ve missed you, you know? And you don’t even care enough to ask.” He whined.

“You haven’t asked me either. You only came shouting…”

“OK, I’m sorry. I just had to show it to someone or I would have exploded. I haven’t showed it to anybody.”

“Is it a surprise then?”

“Yes, yes. You won’t tell, will you?”

Max and his secrets. Hilda had been selected as his official confidant many years back and she had never managed to get rid of the privilege. Although, Max never quite confessed everything. He always kept something to himself. That made things slightly easier for Hilda. Sometimes. Sometimes it made them worse.

“You’ll have to show your parents. They’ll find out.”

“I will, soon…But keep it quiet in the meantime, OK?”

“Fine.”

“Now, guess where I have the other tattoo.”

Thank you for reading, and of course…feel free to guess…I might or might not reveal the location of Max’s second tattoo…

Ah, on Friday guest author Judith Priay!

I connected with María Victoria de Lourdes through Twitter, checked her webpage and was impressed by this author’s work. I asked her if she would come and be a guest in my blog, particularly to talk about how she got into writing. She kindly agreed but told me she’d written a post about that already that I might want to use. When I read it I couldn’t think of a better way to introduce her than to use her post. So here it is!

María Victoria de Lourdes
From the Imagination to the Page
MVL1I am often asked to talk about how I became a writer. In this space I will share my learning down the path of this wonderful literary adventure. I should first clarify that to me, at least, being a writer is not the same thing as being an author. I have been a writer all my life, ever since I learned to write. The decision to become an author and publish my work came much later. After I had a fit.

MVL2I can’t remember when or how I learned to walk, ride a bike, or roller skate, but I remember well the moment when the ever-so-patient, Sister Carmen, guided my hand over my calligraphy notebook and taught me to write. From her I learned that when my pudgy round letters “held hands”, they actually formed words. The first word I ever wrote was Mom. Exactly the word I needed. I had lost my mother when I was three years old, and in my childish mind I thought that if filled my whole notebook with that word, she may come down from heaven and visit. I missed her.

From that magical instant when I learned to convey my feelings on paper, I gave in to the exercise full time. Paper was never enough. It was expensive in Mexico, so I would beg my friends in school, not only to share their lunch, but also a clean page, just one, as there was always something very important I had to write or draw. I journaled with fierce devotion. In the act of writing I found a a best friend. It was my solace and my hope.

MVL3In the beginning, I specialized in writing long, elaborate, letters. I wrote them to whoever would read them, and even if they didn’t. My favorite aunt, Aunt Cris, who lived in a ranch in Cordoba, was one of my first un-willing pen-pals. She never did like to write, not even her name, busy as she was taking care of her four children, her husband and the ranch. Out of pity, no doubt, she indulged me and for every ten lengthy letters of mine, she werote back a succinct telegram, shorter than a tweet. I am certain she did it in honor of her dead sister who blessed her from the heavens. I anxiously looked forward to her replies. Nothing made me happier than to see the elderly mailman approach our house, riding his bike down our street, sweating under the hot Veracruz sun while happily whistling. He was always in a good mood. When he handed me the mail, he would say “Here you go Blondie, but don’t be sad, there’s no letter for Little Lulu today.” On the days there was a letter for me, however, he would ceremoniously kiss the envelope before handing it over through the iron gate. My delight was so profound that I could have kissed him in the spot if it weren’t for the fence that separated us. Through the gate he would had over the mail and through that same gate I would gift him a cold glass of water. Thus I was raised. To never deny anyone respect or water. That very afternoon I would rewrite my prompt reply to poor aunt Cris. Another long letter filled with clichés, love and nostalgia. Dramatic prose has always been my literary style.

When I reached puberty, I became a poet. And since poetic inspiration comes from being in love, I fell in love with everyone, even the cocotero MVL4(coconut seller). It is true. I don’t know whether or not he was handsome, but to me he seemed divine. He was the same age as my brothers, tall and thin and had dimples. I’m sure he knew I had a crush on him, because every time he saw me, he giggled. And so it was that every afternoon, right after I finished my homework, I would casually walk along the boardwalk just to watch him work. The hours would fly by, watching him trim the palm trees with his machete. Nothing seemed more romantic than this platonic, impossible, love affair, that defied the conservative protocol of Veracruz’s proper society where “nice” girls should get married (without tainting their virginity) with boys from “good families”. My notebooks were filled with tacky poems repeating the same theme: the schoolgirl, still in uniform, ran away with the cocotero in his coconut trolley. I never confessed my forbidden love, because I would have been sent overseas, which is exactly what happened anyway, but not for being a lovelorn poet, but for being a dunce who could not learn English.
MVL6In the United States, I finally learned how to read in English, mostly to satisfy my insatiable hunger for literature. The kind family that was my hosting family owned only one book in Spanish: the Bible. They were Evangelists and they felt compelled to save my soul from the Pope’s deluded ideology. I tried to oblige, and read the big book for the very first time (in those days we were not allowed to read it). Much as I tried, I could not get past our Lord Jesus Christ‘s genealogy. I fled to the library and, with a dictionary in hand, I spent my long hours of solitude and longing engrossed in Hans Christian Andresen’s and Brothers Grimm’s fairy tales. Gradually, I progressed from Children’s Literature to the Great ones. The best reward was to finally be able to read Oscar Wilde in his native tongue!
Writing in English was not as easy. In fact, I must confess that I am still perfecting the technique. To this day, I don’t dare translate my own blog entries. I have long believed that translation is an art reserved for people from outer planets. (Note from Translator: not true, she’s really good at it too). There are three things that I can only do in Spanish: write, pray, and love.

One good day I fell in love with my true prince, and given that he liked music (he plays the piano), I immediately ventured into musical composition.MVL7 The fact that I was never able to figure out the ants on the pentagram never stopped me. My love was such that the lyrics flowed in English with great ease and little variation: I love you, I want you, I need you. My prince welcomed my serenades with the typical smile of a well-educated gringo. Not once did he complain or comment about my blatant plagiarism of his most favorite British band.
Years later, after we were married, I attended the university and pursued a degree in literature and creative writing. Those were the most wonderful years. I had a part time job at a hospital to pay my tuition and help with my husband’s tuition as well. Going to school was simply delightful. Wise teachers introduced me to the most wonderful books ever written. Narrative writing opened my eyes, and for the first time, I realized that my words were sticky and overly sweet, worse than softened bubble gum. The overuse of adjectives was not a narrative “style”, they toought me, but pure tackiness. My mentors gently helped me awaken the merciless editor in me who, with a red pen, showed me to be demure, succinct, and purposeful. Now the editor is out of control. She torments me each and every day. I detest her and yet, I also need and respect her.
MVL8The decision to publish my work came years later. I was working as a law professor at the University of Washington. My sons, Nicholas and Manolo were teenagers and were very busy with sports. They rarely dinned at home. On those rare instances when they joined us for dinner, we, the parents, would shut our mouths and listen. Every question could be interpreted as an invasion of their privacy; every suggestion a sermon.
It was during one of those rare, family meals, when my sons talked about the race issue. They didn’t know who they were, they said. Were they white, black, yellow, or exactly which color? Their college applications had that very question: what is your race? If they selected Hispanic, their applications may be given deference. According to the definition of Hispanic in the form, it was clear that if their mother was Mexican, they were Hispanic. The fact that they were bilingual, and that most of their family lived in Mexico, also put them on that “box”.
To me, the issue was clear, but not to my sons. What about the skin color, they asked?. How Mexican was I, being so white? Miguelito’s mom, for example, she did look Mexican. And Miguelito also looked Mexican, which is why he has been chosen to play the role of Cesar Chavez in the school’s play. Nicholas, on the other hand, was as white as flour, with ginger hair that made him look like a Viking. Manolo, on the other hand, was closer to “looking Mexican”, he had dark hair and dark eyebrows, which is why he had been accepted into the Chicano club at school, but not without difficulty, because, actually, he looked more Arabic than Latino. It was true. Manolo could have been from anywhere. He could even be the cocotero’s son.
I stood up, went to my office and got my Mexican Passport. I sat it on the table and reminded them that Miguelito’s mom had been born in Minnesota, did not know how to speak Spanish, and had no idea on how to cook black beans. My children were not convinced. They looked at me suspiciously. Maybe I was not the person they knew, after all. Maybe I was hiding some terrible family secret. I suddenly realized that my children had no idea of how diverse Mexico and our roots really are. I realized that how little they knew about their ancestors, and that with so little understanding, they could never feel proud of their heritage. That same night I called my father and asked him to help me write the story of our family.
When I finished the first chapter of that first novel, I sent it to my brother, Tali, so he could give me feedback. Unbeknownst to me, he, in turn, sent it to an editor in Mexico. A few weeks later, Tali called me to tell me that the editor had sent him an urgent fax, requesting my novel for publishing. I felt flattered and scared. The novel existed only in my head. Now I would actually have to write it!

MVL9
And that is how my career as an author began. After fifteen years in the business I have learned that being an author means being the owner of a small business. You need to secure financing, set up shop, sell your product, obnoxiously, manage accounting, negotiate agreements, and generate content, because without content, there is no product to sell.
Often, I think of the cocotero on the boardwalk. There he was, selling coconuts each and every day. Sometimes his only clients were the flies, which he swatted away, without frustration, with a red bandanna. In better days, he would sell out and then, he would quickly, and happly, go swimming in the sea. I try to be like him. When I get rejections, I swat them away from my life, without frustration, like flies. When I do well and sell my books, I try to return to my beloved sea, my home, Veracruz. In the end, the entrepreneurial effort is the same; it requires tenacity, discipline, persistence, faith, and patience. Most of all patience.
To end, I’d like to share that that my purpose as a writer is not the same as my purpose as an author. As a writer, I will have reached success when the editor in me, whom I call Mrs. Doubt, doesn’t use her red pen. I don’t strive for immortality with my work but I do want to respect the time my readers gift me when they read my work. My goal is to present them with my very best effort. As an author, I will have reached success the day I can live from my books. I don’t seek fame (God deliver me from that woman!), nor do I strive to become a best-seller, but I would like to make a modest living with the income from my work. On that matter you, my dear readers, have the last word.

*********************************************************************************************************************************************

I'm a featured author at Freebooksy

http://www.freebooksy.com/freebooks/2013/1/10/the-man-who-never-was-free-kindle-ebook-with-a-spanish-editi.html

And now it’s usually the time when I tell you what I’m going to be posting next week and make some kind of announcement. Well, I’m not sure what I’m going to post on Tuesday (I have a couple of ideas doing the rounds in my head but haven’t decided yet) and with regards to the announcement…Yes, I have one. Or rather, it’s an update from the post on Tuesday.

If you remember I told you about the giveaway Mary Meddlemore (my friend, author and oh, such a fascinating character) and I had organised. From the 10th to the 14th of the month we’re giving away 6 of our books. Yes, there’re novels (paranormal romance, sci-fi), collection of short stories, another one of my novellas from the series ‘Escaping Psychiatry’ and my book ‘The Man’ (I could not resist giving you the link to the great feature Freebooksy have posted about it) in Spanish and English.

Just in case you’ve missed it, here is the link…

http://freestuffolgamary.wordpress.com/

How is it going? We think well. We’re both pretty new at this (I had a giveaway for another one of my novellas and for Mary it’s the first time), and only published our novels a few months ago (not 3 months yet) but we think it’s going OK. But of course, it’s only the 11th. We still have a fair bit of time left. And we wondered…OK, we’ve posted in our blog about it, we’ve told our friends in Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Google +, LinkedIn…We’ve told people at work, neighbours, friends…No, we haven’t shouted from the rooftops (I leave in a small house, I don’t think it would have much impact), but…we thought (rather, Mary suggested. Credit where credit is due), why don’t we ask the people who read our blog for ideas?

And here we are…She’s posting about it and so am I. Of course, please feel free to share with everybody, but if you can think of other things we could be doing (doable…, legal…timely…), please let us know…

You can leave a comment here, or send me a Tweet (@OlgaNM7), or leave me a message in my Facebook page (www.facebook.com/OlgaNunezMiret), or if you check my webpage (www.OlgaNM.com)  I also have my e-mail address there.

Any suggestions or ideas are welcome.

Thanks very much for reading and thanks on behalf of Mary and me for downloading. And of course thanks to the marvellous María Victoria de Lourdes for her fantastic post.

Olga

Illustrations de The Adventures of Tom Sawyer,...

Illustrations de The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, 1876. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hi all: I’m Olga and as I’ve been promising you I’m going to be bringing you authors as guests to my blog once a week. I am leaving them tell you in their own words what they think any readers would like to know.

My first guest is Gem Thomas, who is indeed a Gem and real character. See what you think and support his work! I for one I’m fascinated by his new project!

1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

My name is GEM. And I am a writer and can firmly state that my recent work is above all the rest in the UK and US.

2. What do you do when you are not writing?

Live it up. Have fun.

3. When did you first start writing and when did you finish your first book?  

I first started writing when I was a child. I created all types of fiction. Action stories were my favorite. All the time, superheroes would be fighting villains in my stories. I recall writing what is now called fan fiction. At the time, I did not know of this genre. It was my story about another boy who floated down the Mississippi river, next to Tom Sawyer. I stopped writing so much in high school. By college, I was too busy to write fiction. After college, I finished my first novel in September of 2010.

4.How did you choose the genre you write in?

I cover many genres and plan on moving into more, once I am clear of my newest novel. The Strong Roads Series are historical-fiction works. I went to Hawaii right after college to learn more about myself. While in the local library, quite early in my adventure, I learned about an amazing tale of the Spanish being in Hawaii centuries before Captain Cook. I was immediately intrigued. I always enjoyed learning about world history so, I was able to turn this legend into a narrative. I am excited to say I am the first person to have done this.

5. Do you want to talk about your newest work?

My newest novel is titled Strong Roads: Blues and Greens and Blood. It is the continued story of the main character in sixteenth-century Hawaii. What interests so many people, I think, is the potential of it being a true story. My main character is made a high chief by the aristocracy and he falls in love with an even higher-classed woman. Their relationship breaks social norms. Then, war erupts in the Island and their lives are forever changed. I combined ingredients from literary classics and am pleased to share it with everyone. But, what I am doing different is releasing it in a digital format. Readers will be able to tap a character’s name and hear how it is pronounced in the ‘native’ tongue of Ancient Hawaii. This is only possible, because of modern technology. Everyone will enjoy the story and love the interactive medium it is told in.

6. Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans?

Yes. I have a crowdfunding campaign. I am raising money for advertisements associated with the release of Strong Roads: Blues and Greens and Bloods. Indiegogo.com is hosting the project and allows for international contributors, which is perfect because my story is able to be enjoyed in the international scene, especially throughout Spanish-speaking countries. There are plenty of rewards for everyone that donates to my crowdfunding project. www.gemthomas.com has information.

Thanks!

*********************************************************************

Just a reminder of the details of my own book:

The link to The Man Who Never Was is:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009TWRT22

You can access the book trailer for The Man in my author’s page in Amazon, or directly in U-tube but if you wish to use links, please use the one above:

http://www.youtube.com/embed/qvUitFG2D20

Next Friday, author Simon Jenner will be my guest. I can’t wait!

Living in the Gap

“Ruffled feathers and endless squawking over a minor difficulty is typical of a crow’s life. I lean back on the counter and realize that could be my line….”

Opinión y actualidad

Opinión sobre noticias y asuntos de actualidad

Los escritos de Héctor Browne

Blog (algo literario y algo viejo) de un Licenciado en Letras, diplomado en edición, y Profesor de Lenguaje.

Priscilla Bettis, Author

The making of a horror novelist.

%d bloggers like this: