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New Author Signing: Levi HR Rosenthal

The Zharmae Publishing Press, together with Max Avalon, is delighted to announce the signing of Levi H. R. Rosenthal.

Rosenthal is one of our youngest authors, and at the age of sixteen is already creating compelling, multifaceted characters in a dark fantasy world.

His first series—about the wanderer Darius Gunn, and his trials and tribulations as he adventures across his country—is a unique endeavor, composed of many short stories that intertwine into a larger tale. The short stories will be released by Max Avalon in monthly installments, starting this December. Each year afterward, a collectible omnibus of the previous year’s stories will be released, swathed in all-new cover art by the talented Vincent Sammy.

Rosenthal is a writer, he says, “because I dream about the day someone out there will pick up my book and enjoy it. Writing is also my passion and my every thought turns into a possible book in my mind.”

He writes “stories that are as real as reality, but set in a different world or a distant future or a period of ancient history. That means your favorite characters might die!”

This particular story is the one he chose to write, he says, because “I wanted to write about a character who is not just your average, selfless, loyal, fearless hero. I wanted to write about someone who does what must be done but struggles to find his own path.”

And finally, what profound memories does he have from the writing process of these stories? The answer is key: “The story of Darius Gunn is not over. So I hope more ‘profound memories’ are yet to come.”

Read all about the author you’ll be returning to month after month in his brand-new interview, which is posted in the Authors section of the TZPP website. Afterwards, you can check out some of Zharmae’s other fabulous authors!

Mark your calendars for the first Darius Gunn short story, coming in December.

The Art of the Six-Word Story

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             Legend has it that Ernest Hemingway was once bet that he couldn’t write a complete story in six words. He won the bet, and $10 from each of his colleagues, with the words: For Sale: Baby Shoes. Never Worn.

Hemingway’s famous challenge has now turned into a writing tool known as “The Six-Word Story.” Not only is writing six-word stories entertaining, but it is a great way to practice writing and thinking of ideas for novels. A good component of writing is the ability to show rather than tell, and the six-word story is the epitome of limiting words while maximizing ideas.

Step 1: Read

            Before actually writing a six-word story, it’s helpful to read some examples. Sixwordstories.net is full of ideas. A couple of our favorites are:

“Longed for him. Got him. Shit.”

“The baby’s blood type? Human, mostly.”

“Rapunzel! I am slipping! A wig?!”

Step 2: Write

            After looking at some examples, it’s time to write your own! The goal here is to write a story that is intriguing, without all of the details.  Starting this process can be a lot harder than it sounds. To get your creative juices flowing, it is helpful to look at words and objects around you in an attempt to gleam inspiration.

We used magnetic refrigerator words to spark our imagination, and came up with:

Straying man. Young lady. Champagne. Poison.

It’s definitely not our best work, but it’s not finished yet! The next step to creating a six-word story is punctuation. The use of commas, periods, question marks, and exclamation points can completely change the meaning of a story. For example, with the use of a little creative punctuation, our basic story can be transformed into:

Straying man, young lady. Champagne? Poison! 

Don’t worry if your six-word story isn’t exactly a work of art. It’s just meant to give you the opportunity to hit the ground running.

Step 3: Expand

            Six-word stories provide a great way to come up with ideas without getting bogged down by exposition. They are a great tool for coming up with character descriptions, background stories, and climactic plotlines. After writing your six-word story, sit down for a five-minute free write and try to expand it. See what happens!

This Holiday Season

 

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This is a time for holding close the ones you love. It’s a time for family, for friends, for laughter, and for delighting in the pleasantries of life. It’s a time for big meals and bigger smiles, for traditions and for the hope that comes with celebrating a new day and a new year. It’s a time for kindness and generosity, for reaching out your hand to help your neighbor. This is a time for love and for enjoying life.

Listen carefully and you may be able to hear music in the air. Breathe in deep the rich aroma of holiday cheer. Savor the taste of the season on your tongue; enjoy how the flavors dance and mingle on your taste buds. Take comfort in the warmth radiating from spending time with your loved ones—it is a special kind of warmth that can be felt from the inside as well as the outside. Look closely at the faces of those who surround you and try to memorize the way their mouths curve happily into smiles. This is a time to cherish.

As we at Zharmae and all the associated imprints draw closed the curtains and head home to our families, we would like to thank you, our readers, for another wonderful year. Thank you for a year of reading, for a year of friendship. You are in our hearts and in our minds this holiday season, for we consider you to be an extended part of the Zharmae family. We look forward to enjoying yet another year with you, one that is certain to overflow with the joys of reading and sharing momentous experiences together.

We are closing our doors for the holidays and will be back to usher in a new year of publishing high-quality books during 2014. For now, everyone at Zharmae would like to wish you the brightest and happiest of holiday seasons. May this time find you surrounded by those you love. May you find peace and rest as you prepare for the new year. Above all, we hope that you delight in the simple pleasures of life and that you have a safe and wonderful holiday season.

The Zharmae Publishing Press will be closed from Friday, December 20, 2013 through Sunday, January 5, 2014. While our offices are closed, we may not respond to inquiries, but please follow us on Twitter and Facebook to receive any news or updates.

Keep reading, keep enjoying each day, and know that we look forward to starting off the new year with you at our side.

 

Happy Thanksgiving

The Zharmae Publishing Press will be closed for the Holiday from November 28th to December 3rd. We wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving and hope you enjoy the festivities.

We would also like to take this time to annouce a new editor who is joining our team. Ashlar Trystan has been brought on as an associate editor working within Tales of the Heinous and Porfirio Press. We are thrilled to have him aboard. If you would like to learn more about Ashlar, feel free to check him out on twitter.

Shrouded by Frances Pauli Release

Shrouded, book 1 in Frances Pauli's Princes of the Shroud series, is set to release this coming November 21, 2013. The Sci-Fi novel with romantic elemets is sure to be a crowd pleaser so be sure to add this great read to your GoodReads Shelf. We can't wait to hear what you think.

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Vashia’s father is the planetary governor. Unfortunately, he’s also a complete bastard. When he promises her to his lackey, Jarn, she panics. On the run in the nastiest corner of the galaxy, Vashia seizes her one chance at escape and signs on as a bride candidate for the elusive race of aliens known as the Shrouded, unaware that she very well may be chosen as the next Queen of Shroud

Of the seven, volatile Shrouded princes, Dolfan may be the only one that doesn't covet the throne. So the last thing he expects to find in the future queen is the woman of his dreams. If he wants Vashia, he must accept the throne as well. Unfortunately, his long-time rival has the same idea. Now, only the planet’s sacred crystal can decide their fates, but what happens when the right woman is paired with the wrong man? And when Jarn comes after what was promised to him?

GoodReads

 

Learn More about the author at FrancesPauli.com

The Wolf of Descarta Release

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The Wolf of Decarta by Daniel Pike will be released this coming Nov 21, 2013

Be sure to add it to your goodreads shelf and pre-order your copy

Book Description: Jaren Reese is just another red collar trapped at the bottom of Descarta’s genetic caste system. But in the Dream Box, he has forged a new digital identity for himself: Balmus, the Wolf Knight.

Balmus has long since carried a torch for the Linker Petra, but he doesn’t know her, not really. Outside of the Dream Box she is just another one of his fantasies. But Brea Morgen is the real thing– a living, breathing person who desires Jaren for who he truly is, not merely what he pretends to be. 

When the Dream Box that Jaren depends on crashes due to the evolution of a hostile A.I. life form, a secret military branch commissions a team of gamers and hackers to go back into the corrupted Dream Box to eliminate the threat and Jaren is given the chance of a lifetime—though it comes at a price—and Jaren now needs to decide just how much he’s willing to lose because the war about to be waged will be one on two fronts - the corporeal and the virtual.

Goodreads

Writer Tips

 

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Writing is not easy and becoming an author is even harder. Many of history's greatest authors struggled and even failed throughout their careers but each one continued in their craft. They did not stop, they did not allow themselves to get discouraged, and they took each piece of advice that they were given with a grain of salt. Even Sylvia Plath received a rejection letter in her time, for THE BELL JAR nonetheless. Can you believe that she was told, “There certainly isn’t enough genuine talent for us to take notice.”

So always remember that even if one person, one agent, one publisher, decides that your work isn’t utterly fantastic, that does not mean that someone else won’t think the opposite.

Having done a bit of research, we here at TZPP have compiled a list of writer’s tips from some of the greats. These authors have been through it all and faced both praise and criticism for their works and we wanted to share what they’ve had to say about writing. So take from this list those words of wisdom that will help you though like Lev Grossman says, “Don’t take anyone’s writing advice too seriously.”

1. The first draft of everything is shit. –Ernest Hemingway

2. Never use jargon words like reconceptualize, demassification, attitudinally, judgmentally. They are all hallmarks of a pretentious ass. -Davis Ogilvy

3. If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time – or the tools – to write. Simple as that. –Stephen King

4. Here is a lesson in creative writing. First rule: Do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites representing absolutely nothing. All they do is show that you’ve been to college. –Kurt Vonnegut

5. If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first greatest, or course, is to shoot them now, while they’re happy. –Dorothy Parker

6. Remember: When people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong or how to fix it, they are almost always wrong. – Neil Gaiman

7. I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide. –Harper Lee

8. You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club. –Jack London

10. Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout with some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand. –George Orwell

11. Prose is architecture, not interior decoration. –Ernest Hemingway.

12. Write drunk, edit sober. – Ernest Hemmingway

13. Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be. –Mark Twain

14.  Don’t take anyone’s writing advice too seriously. –Lev Grossman

15. Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative. –Oscar Wilde

16. Be your own editor/critic. Sympathetic but merciless! –Joyce Carol Oates

17. Rewrite everything. Even letters –James McBride

18. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt –Sylvia Path

19. Keep your exclamation points under control. You are allowed no more than two or three per 100,000 words of prose. If you have the knack of playing with exclaimers the way Tom Wolfe does, you can throw them in by the handful.– Elmore Leonard

20. No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader. -Robert Frost

21. Let grammar, punctuation, and spelling into your life! Even the most energetic and wonderful mess has to be turned into sentences. –Terry Pratchett

22. Always carry a notebook. And I mean always. The short-term memory only retains information for three minutes; unless it is committed to paper you can lose an idea forever. –Will Self

23. Writing isn't about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end it's about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life as well. It's about getting up, getting well, and getting over. Getting happy, okay? –Stephen King

 

New Authors with TZPP

 

The Zharmae Publishing Press is pleased to announce the recent signing of RoAnna Mitchell, Steven Brown, and Marta Salek.

RoAnna “Sylver” Mitchell is a Performing Arts Major and Psychology Honors student at Marylhurst University. She is passionate about smart, weird stories, and seeks to “give cotemporary urban fantasy a kick in the butt with eight-inch stiletto heels”. Her novel Chameleon Moon sets up the explosive, dystopian story of Parole, and the strange wonderful misfits who call it home. RoAnna wants to use this novel to tell the story of damaged, marginalized people who help each other heal, and find the beauty in their bizarre lives. 

A nursing student by day and author by night, Marta Salek weaves together contemporary reality and fantasy to explore the power of human relationships. She is passionate about speculative fiction, and believes that “while amazing worlds and magic are important, it’s the stories and relationships that the characters weave which truly brings a book to life”. Her debut novel “Reticulum” tells the story of Matthew and Andrea, a star-crossed duo that must navigate the magical boundaries of the Reticulum while dealing with issues of trust, love and isolation.

When Steven Brown is not writing, he enjoys studying history, delving into religious texts, and building Lego sets with his son. Steven draws upon his former struggles and personal tragedy to create stories that combine fantastical elements and urban reality. His novel “Sinfully Cursed” tells the tale of a character reconciling his roles as both a wolf-shifter and financial aid counselor.

Keep a lookout for these titles, set to release in 2014, and more amazing works from these new authors and check out their websites for additional details.

 

RoAnna: http://chameleonmoonfanblog.tumblr.com/

Marta: http://martasalek.com/

Steven: http://www.stevendanielbrown.com/

 

Remembering Tom Clancy

 

The Zharmae Publishing Press was saddened to see that, on October 1, 2013, author Tom Clancy passed away at age 66; his cause of death is unknown. Clancy was a remarkable author with a talent for creating detailed, compelling fiction that entertained readers worldwide. His most popular books include The Hunt for Red October, Clear and Present Danger, and the Jack Ryan book series.

            Clancy was born in Baltimore County, Maryland, on April 12, 1947. He graduated from Loyola College in 1969 with a degree in English, following which he joined a small insurance agency in Owings, Maryland. He eventually purchased the agency and began to write novels in his spare time. Clancy wanted to join the ROTC, but was denied because of his nearsightedness.

            This did not stop Clancy from showing his appreciation for the military. In a 2010 press release he said that, “The U.S. Military is us. There is no truer representation of a country than the people that it sends into the field to fight for it.” The Hunt for Red October was published in 1984 by the Naval Institute Press. Though his goal was for it to sell 5,000 copies, it sold more than 45,000 copies and became a best seller after then President Reagan endorsed the book, calling it, “my kind of yarn.” This success helped to open the door for other authors who wrote military and action books.  

His fiction works about the military were praised for being heavily detailed and researched; in fact, his works were sometimes rumored to contain classified information, and he told the New York Times in 1996 that he had “made up stuff that’s turned out to be real.” He also wrote nonfiction pieces about different branches of the military, including Submarine: A Guided Tour Inside a Nuclear Warship and Fight Wing: A Guided Tour of an Air Force Combat Wing. Of his twenty-eight books, seventeen were listed on the New York Times bestseller list.

            Many of his books were made into successful movies, and others were developed into well-known video games, such as Ghost Recon and Rainbow Six, through Red Storm Entertainment, a video game company he cofounded. Clancy’s final book, “Command Authority,” is due to be published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons, an imprint of Penguin Group, in December 2013.

            Clancy is survived by his wife of fourteen years, Alexandra Marie Llewellyn, and their child, as well his four children from his first marriage to Wanda Thomas King.    

 

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