Friday, March 28, 2008

Vol. 6 / Research & Permission

Non-fiction is written through research, and we are a fortunate generation to have the internet available to do our research. Using the search engines like Google and Yahoo, nearly every existing topic entered will return several resources. The library is a good source for research as well. For each fact you accumulate for your book, keep notes on where you found the information and who provided it to the location you found it, i.e., what website, book, newspaper, journal, article, etc. You will need to source all your information in your book including the date when the information was printed.

You can post free requests for information on your subject at the Para Publishing website. These may include the personal stories or experiences of others. See “Para Publishing” below.

A rule of thumb is never copy more than three words in sequence of another persons work (copyright infringement). If you want to use someone else’s work word-for-word as part of your book, such as a quote or research document, you will need written permission from that person.

Your written request should include the original authors name, the title and copyright date of the work, a page number or reference site of the work, and exactly what part in total you are requesting to use. You can condense this information into a letter form, but be very specific on all details of their work. Include your name, contact information, and what you plan to use their work in conjunction with, i.e., your book title. Offer to give them credit in the book and source their name and work on the page where the work will be included. Include the following:

• Your name, address, and all contact information
• Addressed to?
• Date
• A letter similar to this:

I am writing a book tentatively titled, “John Writes a Book.” I would like your permission to include the excerpts as described below in any and all editions of the book for worldwide distribution, and in all promoting and free and paid advertizing.

In exchange for your permission, you will be listed in my Acknowledgments, names and titles index (if included in your book), and sources on the page the excerpts appear. I will also send you a copy of the finished book.

I hope you will agree to give your quality work greater exposure.

For your convenience, enclosed are a self-addressed stamped envelope and a copy of this letter for your records.

• Signature
• Include on a new page:

Material to be reprinted: Excerpts from the book “The Way is to Write.” Page 222, section begins with “Only you can write a book.” Ends with, “Are you a good writer.” Total 17 lines. Copyright date: 2001

• A line for them to sign if they grant permission, “Permission granted,” as well as a line underneath denying permission, “Permission denied.” Include a place for them to date the document along with their signature.

The internet has made an easier job of locating people. Start immediately seeking out your needed permissions for it can take a long time to receive a response. Use the search engines to locate writers and professionals for permission. If that fails, contact the publisher of the work. If you can’t obtain permission, don’t use it.

Para Publishing marketplace newsletter archives:

E-zine author; Carol Denbow
Author of: Are You Ready to Be Your Own Boss? (2006 Plain & Simple Books, LLC)
Stress Relief for the Working Stiff (summer 2008 Publish America)
A Book Inside, Writing, publishing, and selling your story
(Summer 2008 Plain & Simple Books, LLC))

Visit Carol’s Website at

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Why getting married?

A workmate of mine, whose stories oftentimes inspired me to write for my blog, told me an experience of her cousin some days ago. Her cousin, a woman, lives in a small town in Central Java while her husband lives in the metropolis Jakarta. Before they got married, they knew very little about each other. Because of respective jobs, they decided to undergo a long distance marriage. However, not long after their wedding day (three months or so), the husband started to stay away. He didn’t visit his wife regularly anymore.
Several months passed until the wife’s family found out that in Jakarta the husband had a boyfriend.
“If he already realizes that he is a homosexual, why did he marry my cousin?” my workmate asked me.
“Well, you know in our ‘culture’, most people still think that homosexual is a kind of disease. They believe that this kind of ‘disease’ maybe can be cured after getting married, to force the homosexual to ‘go back to the destiny’ that men—read it as human beings born with penis—were created to get attracted and marry women—read it as human beings born with vagina and breasts. As you read in some articles openly written by some homosexual people, many of them found out that they fail to ‘be cured’ after marrying a woman. This made them realize that marrying a woman is not the best cure, or perhaps this made them change their mind that homosexual is not a kind of disease. However, their voice is silenced by the very strong and oppressive opinion by the public that get powerful so-called justification from religious people.”
“What do you think of some people who say that they are really ‘cured’ after getting married?” my workmate inquired.
“I am sorry to say that I am not one of them so I don’t know how to answer that question of yours. In fact, I have never had a heart-to-heart talk with such people you mentioned.” Was my response. LOL. “There are many things to consider; one of them is whether they were truly born homosexual—such as Dede Oetomo (the writer of MEMBERI SUARA PADA YANG BISU—“Give voice to the dumb”) , or they ‘became’ homosexual after socializing with other homosexuals, or because of ‘trauma’ they got when they were very young, such as being raped by a man.”
My workmate also told me about her cousin—the wife—who refused to divorce her homosexual husband. “I will wait…” was her excuse. “What is she waiting for?” my workmate asked me again. (You can comment that my friend mistakenly asked me, and not directly asked her cousin and her husband. LOL.)
“Perhaps she also thinks that being homosexual is a kind of disease. It means she is convinced that one day her husband will be cured, and he will be back to her.” I was trying to analyze. (So “wise guy” of me. LOL.)
“But you said that it is not a kind of disease. If her husband is not cured, her waiting will be very useless. She doesn’t know what she is waiting for?”
(You can say that this workmate of mine is very naïve. LOL.)
To answer that question, I cited an experience of another woman. This woman said that her husband has never treated her well since they got married twelve years ago. He always makes her cry. Recently, she got a job, to help someone open a burger stall. She said that the money she got really made her feel that she was really an important person. The money also made her feel confident to face her future.
“If only my pay is enough to afford my own life and my two children, I would prefer to live separately from my husband who never loves me,” she said to me.
I, who intended to be a mediator between her and her husband, then told her husband about this. FYI, her husband told me that he married her only ‘to follow what patriarchal culture believes that everyone must get married to be considered ‘normal’ because the girl he loves married someone else. The wife who oftentimes loses her control when being angry and becomes a boxer and the husband is the victim failed to make him love her due to that habit. The husband seemed very relieved hearing what I said. “How much is ‘enough’ to afford her life and our two children? I don’t mind at all to give all my pay to her as long as she lets me go.” He said.
The following day, I told the wife about what her husband said. Can you guess what she responded?
“No mbak, No matter what I don’t want to be separated from him. I will do anything he asks me to as long as this marriage goes on. Please tell me what I should do, mbak? I don’t want my husband to leave me.”

What is your conclusion?
1. The two couples have a wrong intention to get married.
2. The two women follow what public believe, “To stay married is better than being divorced, although they have to live in a loveless marriage, although they have to shed blood tears because of unhappiness inside it.”
PT56 15.00 230308

Feminism Ideology

“From several kinds of feminism ideology, how do you classify Gilman?”

This question came up after I presented my paper entitled “Woman Madness in Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s ‘The Yellow Wallpaper’ and Putu Oka Sukanta’s ‘Dewi Bulan Jatuh di Batam’”, in the International Seminar held by Catholic University Soegijapranata Semarang, last January 16, 2008.
I must say that it was somewhat difficult to answer since Gilman did not call herself as a feminist. One clear reason behind Gilman’s opinion was in the end of the nineteenth century, the women (feminist) movement struggled for suffrage. Gilman was of opinion that right to vote didn’t automatically make women equal to men. She was convinced that working to earn money in order to be economically independent would make a woman equal to men. However, the twentieth century critics labeled her as a radical feminist due to that conviction—that made Gilman different from her contemporary woman activists in that century. Therefore, to answer the question above, I cited what the twentieth century literary critics called Gilman.
“How do you classify yourself? A liberal feminist, a radical, Marxist, or any other kind of feminist? Someone asked me via a short message.
This question also made me dumb. How do I classify myself?
Different from Gilman who refused to be called a feminist, I proudly claim myself as a feminist. I oftentimes think that I need to expose my way of thinking, with the hope that people will understand why I say this and that, or write this and that. Nevertheless, I don’t mind either if my exposing myself as a feminist to public doesn’t make them easily understand me. (This is of course because many people in Indonesia still don’t know what ‘feminist’ means. They are somewhat confused of terms ‘feminist’ and ‘feminine’. LOL.)
However, the same as my confusion how to classify Gilman, I don’t want to classify myself either, whether I am pro of what kind feminism ideology. As I have written in several posts in my blogs (for those who loyally follow and ready my posts, probably they will not really mind themselves whether I am a radical, liberal, etc feminist), I have my own definition of feminism. Feminism is more to give women right to choose kind of life for themselves. Give women freedom to make their own decision. What kind of decision? Read my previous post I entitled “Gender Equality” (or check it in my blog at Issue of what kind of feminism ideology is not important for me anymore, as long as women feel at ease in their lives. Focus more on bettering women’s lives rather than stopping at question “What kind of feminist are you?” We are all sisters, aren’t we? No matter what kind of feminism ideology we adhere? Even no matter whether a woman doesn’t involve herself in a feminist movement.
PT56 15.40 230308

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


If you are on the list, congratulations! If not, please keep writing your wonderful stories and bringing romance, suspense et al into your readers and fans lives!

2008 RITA Finalists
Romance Writers of America® (RWA) nnounced the finalists for the 2008 RITA Awards®. The 2008 RITA honors romance fiction published in 2007, and over 1,000 novels and novellas were judged in 12 categories.

Winners of the awards will be announced August 2nd at the RITA and Golden Heart Awards Ceremony to be held at RWA’s 28th Annual National Conference in San Francisco, California.

2008 RITA for Best First Book Finalists

Dead Girls Are Easy by Terri Garey
Graffiti Girl by Kelly Parra
Prime Time by Hank Phillippi Ryan
Prom Dates From Hell by Rosemary Clement-Moore
Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn
Snow Angel by Jamie Carie
Thief With No Shadow by Emily Gee
Treasure by Helen Brenna

2008 RITA for Contemporary Series Romance Finalists

Always a Bridesmaid by Kristin Hardy
Fall From Grace by Kristi Gold
Make-Believe Mom by Elaine Grant
Night Mischief by Nina Bruhns
Sleeping Partner by Kelly Hunter
Snowbound by Janice Johnson
The Mile High Club by Heidi Rice
The Tycoon's Princess Bride by Natasha Oakley

2008 RITA for Contemporary Series Romance: Suspense/Adventure Finalists

High-Risk Affair by RaeAnne Thayne
Midnight Prince by Dani Sinclair
Sara's Son by Tara Taylor Quinn
Stranded With A Spy by Merline Lovelace
The Medusa Affair by Cindy Dees
The Medusa Seduction by Cindy Dees
Treasure by Helen Brenna
Untouched by Samantha Hunter

2008 RITA for Contemporary Single Title Romance Finalists
Blame It On Cupid by Jennifer Greene
Catch of the Day by Kristan Higgins
Coming Undone by Susan Andersen
Sexiest Man Alive by Diana Holquist
She's No Angel by Leslie Kelly
Tangled Up In You by Rachel Gibson
Tempt Me Tonight by Toni Blake
The Sleeping Beauty Proposal by Sarah Strohmeyer

2008 RITA for Historical Romance Finalists

And Then He Kissed Her by Laura Lee Guhrke
Beloved Warrior by Patricia Potter
Lessons of Desire by Madeline Hunter
Mine Till Midnight by Lisa Kleypas
Surrender to a Scoundrel by Julianne MacLean
Tempted Tigress by Jade Lee
The Leopard Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt
The Perfect Kiss by Anne Gracie

2008 RITA for Inspirational Romance Finalists

A Touch of Grace by Linda Goodnight
Autumn Blue by Karen Harter
Pursuit of Justice by Pamela Tracy
Rainbow's End by Irene Hannon
Ransomed Dreams by Amy Wallace
Splitting Harriet by Tamara Leigh
Taming Rafe by Susan May Warren
When the Morning Comes by Cindy Woodsmall

2008 RITA for Novel with Strong Romantic Elements Finalists

A Gentle Rain by Deborah Smith
High Noon by Nora Roberts
Learning to Breathe by Karen White
Odd Mom Out by Jane Porter
See No Evil by Allison Brennan
Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn
Sugar Daddy by Lisa Kleypas
Thief With No Shadow by Emily Gee

2008 RITA for Paranormal Romance Finalists

Dead Girls Are Easy by Terri Garey
Demon's Kiss by Maggie Shayne
Games of Command by Linnea Sinclair
He Loves Me, He Loves Me Hot by Stephanie Rowe
Lover Revealed by J.R. Ward
Prince of Magic by Linda Winstead Jones
Raintree: Haunted by Linda Winstead Jones
Touch of Darkness by Christina Dodd

2008 RITA for Regency Historical Romance Finalists

Blackthorne's Bride by Shana Galen
Claiming the Courtesan by Anna Campbell
Lord of Scandal by Nicola Cornick
The Secret Diaries of Miss Miranda Cheever by Julia Quinn
Untouched by Anna Campbell

2008 RITA for Romance Novella Finalists

“Angel and the Hellraiser” in Demon’s Delight by Vickie Taylor
“Born in My Heart” in Like Mother, Like Daughter by Jennifer Greene
“Christmas Cravings” in Holiday with a Vampire by Maureen Child
“Christmas Day Family” in A Western Winter Wonderland by Cheryl St. John
“Eternity in Death” in Dead of Night by Nora Roberts
“Fallen Angel” in A Western Winter Wonderland by Jenna Kernan
“Mischief and the Marquess” in Perfect Kisses by Sylvia Day
“On the Fringe” in Dead of Night by Mary Kay McComas

2008 RITA for Romantic Suspense Finalists

Die for Me by Karen Rose
Ice Blue by Anne Stuart
Ice Storm by Anne Stuart
Prime Time by Hank Phillippi Ryan
Speak No Evil by Allison Brennan
Traceless by Debra Webb
White Heat by Cherry Adair

2008 RITA for Young Adult Romance

Girl at Sea by Maureen Johnson
Graffiti Girl by Kelly Parra
Leaving Paradise by Simone Elkeles
Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Vol. 5 / Book length – Where do I go from here?

Some writers plan ahead as to how many pages their complete book will be. Others simply start writing and end when they feel their work is completed. Either way, before publishing, the number of pages will need to be decided.

Most commonly, the length of your manuscript determines what type of publication you have.

• Short story – under 15,000 words
• Novella – 15,000 to 29,999 words
• Short novel – 30,000 to 44,999 words
• Novel – 45,000 to 69,999 words
• Plus or super novel – over 70,000 words

There are some exceptions to these numbers. If you are writing a children’s book, you may have as little as 500 words, but many more illustrations, which might add to the total number of pages in the finished work. If your manuscript is less than 8 pages, it may not be worthwhile to publish as a book. In most cases, a minimum of 32 pages is needed for a hard cover book to have a solid “backbone.”

If you self publish and have your book printed, your layout and printing costs may vary depending on the books length. Many printers prefer a book to be set up with a particular amount of pages. Most books are printed on large sheets of paper which are folded into sections containing 8, 16, or 32 pages. Since printers generally set up the pages in segments of 8 at a time, keeping your book at an even number devisable by 8 can save you some money on printing costs. For instance, if your book is 144 pages in length, the printer may use 18 sheets to copy it (144 divided by 8 = 18). Printers may vary on the number of pages per sheet so it is important to discuss this with your specific printer.

When calculating the total number of pages in your finished book, don’t forget to add up the extra pages needed for components such as, your table of contents, introduction, index, etc. And by all means, don’t forget that book pages are two-sided.

Suggested Reading;

Modern Matriarch, The Ideal Length for Your Book
McGraw-Hill, Book Length

E-zine author; Carol Denbow
Author of; Are You Ready to Be Your Own Boss? (2006 Plain & Simple Books, LLC)
Stress Relief for the Working Stiff (summer 2008, Publish America)
A Book Inside, Writing, publishing, and selling your story
(Summer 2008 Plain & Simple Books, LLC))

Visit Carol’s new website at

Click here to receive this e-zine every month!

Copyright © March 2008 by Plain & Simple Books, LLC
All rights reserved. The text of this publication, or any part thereof, may not be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission from the publisher.
We are always happy to share the information provided in our e-zine as long as credits are included. For reprint permission please e-mail The Editor

Friday, March 7, 2008

Linda Francis Lee - The Ex-debutante


Universal Studies Options THE DEVIL IN THE JUNIOR LEAGUE

Jennifer Garner Signs on to Star and Produce

Screenwriter Kate Kondell takes a trip into the world of Texas Socialites as she writes the screenplay for DEVIL

I'm so excited for the release of this book. If you read the Devil and the Jr. League, then you're going to love this one as well

The Ex-debutante - Available April 1st

Book Description

Carlisle Wainwright Cushing, of the old-moneyed Willow Creek, Texas Wainwrights, is the daughter of larger-than-life Ridgely Wainwright . . . Cushing-Jameson-Lackley-Harper-Ogden. Given her mother’s predilection for divorce, is anyone surprised that Carlisle became a divorce lawyer, far away in Boston, where no one, including her fiancé, knows she’s an heiress. But now, three years later, Carlisle is lured back to Texas to deal with her mother’s latest divorce which has the whole town talking, and the family-sponsored 100th annual debutante ball which is on the verge of collapse.

Suddenly the determined lawyer is weighing the merits of beads vs. crystals on ball gowns and teaching eighteen year olds to balance books on their heads, all the while trying to figure out how to tell her deeply Southern mother that she is engaged to a Yankee. Things go from bad to worse and she’s afraid she’ll never get back to Boston, at least with her reputation intact, especially when good ol’ Southern boy Jack Blair shows up on the opposite side of the divorce court, making her wonder if the man is going after her mother in the proceedings, or her given the pesky little fact that she left him three years earlier.

Her trip home challenges Carlisle’s sense of who she really is and forces her to face the secrets her family has tried to keep, well, secret. Funny and smart, poignant and true, THE EX-DEBUTANTE is a story about the risks one woman must take if she stands a chance of finding herself, real love, and her place in that crazy thing we call family.

Bestselling author of nineteen novels, Linda Francis Lee is a former Texas Debutante who has high hopes that all photos of the experience are long gone. She currently lives in New York City with her husband where she is at work on her next novel.

If you live in Texas, Florida orNew Jersey it looks like you can attend one of Linda's booksignings. Just go to her website for the details.