Author Archives: Laine Cunningham

About Laine Cunningham

Laine Cunningham is an award-winning author, ghostwriter, and publishing consultant who has been quoted on CNN Money, MSNBC.com, FoxNews.com, and other national and international media. Her novels interweave social, cultural, historical, political and spiritual movements that have occurred within different groups and at different times. These elements engage readers in discussions of how similar forces have changed or are changing the contemporary world…and what might lie in our future. When individuals recognize how large issues build over time from multiple small steps, they recognize that everyone can foment change through their choices and their decisions. Her work has won multiple national awards, including the Hackney Literary Award and the James Jones Literary Society fellowship. In past years, the Hackney Award was received by Horton Foote and William Styron, placing her in the ranks of Pulitzer Prize-winning authors. She has received dozens of fellowships and residency slots from programs like the Jerome Foundation, the Vermont Studio Center, the New York Mills Cultural Center, Wildacres Center for the Humanities, Arte Studio Ginestrelle in Assisi, Italy, the TAKT Kunstprojektraum in Berlin, Germany, Fusion Art in Turin, Italy and The Hambidge Center. Her nonfiction books include "Writing While Female or Black or Gay: Diverse Voices in Publishing," which includes tips on re-engineering the publishing industry with grassroots actions. She is also the author of the travel memoir "Woman Alone: A Six-Month Journey Through the Australian Outback" and a series of Zen and Wisdom books combining unique inspirational text with beautiful photos.

Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest – Winning Writers

Just wanted to share this contest with you poets. It is run by some really great folks, and the prize is $1500 plus publication.

Source: Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest – Winning Writers

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Writer’s House, Tbilisi, Georgia

For the last two weeks, I’ve been enrolled in workshops through the Summer Literary Seminars (SLS) out of Montreal, Canada. Morning workshops run for the entire two weeks, while afternoon workshops run one week each.

Writers HouseThe program is hosted by the Writer’s House of Georgia. Located in Tbilisi, the building was completed in 1905. The Art Nouveau architecture blends Georgian and European influences, and the building has witnessed many important historic events, particularly in the political realm.

Although the building is in the heart of the city, the Writer’s House is a quiet sanctuary in the city. The central courtyard hosts a lush garden that stays cool even on the hottest days.

Stop by when you are in Tbilisi, or consider writing and learning with the SLS programs.

Parisian Indie Bookstore Shakespeare and Company

IMG_20180713_120738On Friday, I took advantage of a fourteen-hour layover in Paris, France. With so much time to spend, I headed into the city for a quick look around.

The indie bookstore Shakespeare and Company was on my list. The shop is on a street known for the vendors who set up book stalls along the Seine River. Their location is near Notre-Dame Cathedral and the Louvre.

Shakespeare and Company is an English-language bookstore in the heart of Paris. The building was originally constructed as a monastery. An old tradition held that one monk was assigned the duty of lighting the lamps at nightfall. The bookstore’s founder, George Whitman, cast himself as that monk when he began operating a store that would provide light through literature.

Going Hybrid

A great look at the realities of hybrid publishing.

BREVITY's Nonfiction Blog

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On Tuesday, we talked about publishers soliciting authors in the guise of a publication offer.

That’s not a book deal. That’s a (slick) commercial for their services.

But for some authors, “hybrid” publishing works. Could it be right for you?

Old-school vanity publishers know their terrible reputations, and many have rebranded as “hybrid.” They charge authors a “contribution” that pays their costs and a healthy profit margin. They don’t care if your book sells—they already made their money. You may end up with cartons of unsold books, text badly or not-at-all edited, dreadful covers, crappy page design.

True hybrid presses offer a legitimate package of publishing services. It costs more than self-publishing—they still profit before selling your book—but you’re not doing it all yourself. Hybrids can provide a smoother publication process, bookstore placement, reviews, and some of the legitimacy of an imprint.

Is hybrid right for…

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The Art of Appraisal Wins Gold

Art of Appraisal

I’ve written on this blog before about Dr. Barbara Culp, an experienced educator who has written an exceptional series for anyone involved in education. Her books target teachers, parents, students, administrators, and superintendents. Dr. Culp is unstoppable in her dedication!

Now one of her books, The Art of Appraisal from leading educational publisher Rowman & Littlefield, has received a gold award. The award comes from the Nonfiction Authors Association, and is provided for excellence in nonfiction works. Here’s the description from R&L’s website:

The Art of Appraisal saves time and boosts performance with effective tools and a streamlined process.
With a few detailed comments, an appraisal can correct weak habits, boost midlevel professionals, and launch excellent teachers into greatness. The Art of Appraisal allows administrators to reap the greatest benefits by creating clarity and efficiency in the process.
First, a binary feedback structure ruled by four performance tiers is described. Then, ten key areas of teacher responsibility are defined. Each task is further parsed into four subcategories. Evaluations become faster and easier, and the feedback becomes exponentially more profound.
Nonfiction-Award-04.2.3-Gold-150Rich with real-world examples and comments about different performance ratings, The Art of Appraisal clarifies and distills the evaluation process. Supplemental chapters are packed with practical comments that can be pasted into evaluations. This structured, step-by-step system was developed by Dr. Culp, an educational professional with over forty years of experience.
An invaluable tool for administrators and the teachers they evaluate, The Art of Appraisal allows a school’s most effective tool to be used in the most efficient manner.

 

Read more about Dr. Culp’s motivation here, and about her first six titles here. Hear directly from this sterling professional in the author interview here.

Have you read any of these books, or given them as gifts to your school or a special educator you respect? Let me know about your experiences!