@YeWhat.Biz #booksni

Taking a break from blogging here @ BooksNI and in  the meantime read blog posts

 @ YeWhat.Biz 

editor's desk - 05 days 02:40:01 left...

 The clock is ticking and Owen now only has just over 5 days left to make it into the top 5. To encourage you to back the book, if you haven't already done so here's a review of The Time Warriors. It's reviewed by  Christine who works as a civil servant in Belfast. She was told about Owen Quinn's book through a friend. Sci-fi is not her usual usual thing but she backed it on Authonomy and before she knew it she  had read the first two chapters.

The Time Warriors is an engrossing read which took me by surprise. The scifi elements are well placed and the character of Varran is an intriguing one; a man who hasn't aged but doesn't know if he is immortal or not. As he tells Tyran, he has never had the inclination to throw himself under a bus to find out.
The book is made up of 17 different stories but all connected and building towards a series finale in Tempest where everything comes together in a rip roaring adventure that threatens Earth and more importantly, the Time Warriors themselves.
Without spoiling it, what shines amid the scifi and aliens is the human drama where Owen deals with bullies, unrequited love and bizarrely, makes losing your virginity a life changing event. I cried at the end of Homecoming as Jacke deals with the death of her grandmother and questions herself.
And this is another plus for the book. I actually care about these characters and what they go through and Owen has given each one a journey of self discovery, again cleverly using scfi adventure as a backdrop.
What I found a good device was, you think you know what is going on but Owen twists your expectations. He says they battle Bigfoot, Jack the Ripper and the Celts but each one subverts what you think and becomes something quite different and engaging.
The fact we now have a Nr Irish, black female lead is a brilliant idea as I could see Belfast and for once, the troubles are not the focal point of being Irish, living your life in this new Ireland is but with aliens and villains creeping at our doors here in the North, life just got a whole lot creepier.
The Time Warriors is a visual treat, such vivid imagery and breath taking stories that will take you by the scruff of the neck and throw you into worlds you never imagined.
If this doesn't put us on the map, then nothing will. Superb.
Remember, everyting happens for a reason! You have been warned.
 To help Owen make it into the Top Five...
  1. Register (simple) on http://www.authonomy.com
  2. Search for 'THE TIME WARRIORS' and click on it 
  3. Then click on 'Back the book'

#FollowFriday @garrett_carr

According to mashable.com #FollowFriday began with a simple tweet @
I am starting Follow Fridays. Every Friday, suggest a person to follow, and everyone follow him/her. Today its @fancyjeffrey & @w1redone.
The idea is to think of interesting people you already follow and recommend them to others.
Mykl Roventine suggested the hashtag #followfriday, and a few friends (Chris Brogan, Erin Kotecki Vest, Aaron Brazell and Jim Kukral) helped spread the word. On the first FollowFriday, there were almost two #followfriday tweets per second at its peak.By Saturday morning, there was no trace of FollowFriday.Then late the next Thursday night, suddenly #followfriday tweets began to appear in foreign languages! It seemed that FollowFriday was back. Now, every Friday, people suggest other people to follow.
As it's Friday I thought for all you tweeters out there and those who haven't yet started tweeting that I should suggest a #FollowFriday. Suggested because the tweeter puts  a bit of effort into his poetic tweets. He isn't followed by or following thousands of people yet, but I'd reckon he has one of the best twitter pages I've seen yet. Tweets like...

- Wendy and I had the craic / on today's Talkback / Hope I kept my cool / and not blab like a fool - http://bit.ly/cjrO4l (@wendytalksback)

- You have an hour and half / to win a copy of my book / have a go, it's a laugh / a few others have partook - http://bit.ly/9tGeOk

- A change is as good as a break / But I’ll get both at Flat Lake - www.theflatlakefestival.com

- Me and Monsters in No Alibis / come along, or send your spies - http://bit.ly/aoHZed @young_at_Art @CultureNI @NI4kids

The twitterer is Garrett Carr who comes from a town in the west of Ireland. He has a background in illustration and has worked for governmental agencies in his native Ireland and for development agencies in Latin America. Now living in Belfast, he he contributes to the city's burgeoning literary scene with publications, exhibitions and readings.

The Twelve by Stuart Neville: Out now in paperback.

For any aliens who've just landed on this planet or ex prisoners who've been banged up in solitary with only a Bible to read for the last year there's a book now out in mass market paperback you just have to read. I can't believe it's nearly a year since the book was first published, nearly a year since I enjoyed reading it. It's a book that I just might read again sometime.The book is entitled The Twelve and is written by Stuart Neville.
I've been reading Stuarts blog for a few years now and it's been great to see how the book started and progressed over the years. We even got to read snippets of the book on the blog. Like every good blogger Stuart found it hard to resist a blogging exercise.

After all is said and done, more is said than done!

Join in, have fun...

Introducing, Northern Irish sci-fi author Owen Quinn.

"I'm a 41 year old kid that at this stage will never grow up. I get excited every time I see a certain police box and in that moment when you actually stand on the threshold you believe that there may be more behind those wood panelled Tardis doors" Yes, that's what Owen's about me section on his Authonomy page reads. Owen's another Northern Irish author on the campaign trail, campaigning for your backing for his book THE TIME WARRIORS  Moving up the ranks  Owen's hoping that he'll make it all the way up to the top 5 so that the book will be read by the publisher, Harper Collins, with the possibility then of a publishing deal.He's 10 days left to achieve his dream. I met Owen last week and interrogated him, not quite Castlereagh style.


Why Authonomy, aren’t there more conventional routes to getting a book published?
Getting a publishing deal is bloody hard and you usually need an agent. Most publishers won't look at you without it. I was offered a deal in February this year by a London publisher (pretty big and well known) except it turned out to be a Vanguard contract where I had to pay £4,600 over 10 months and they would publish it. Not having that sort of money I said no, so they came back and offered to drop it to £4,000 over 15 months but again I said no. I would have been tempted if I had that sort of money but to be honest, if I'm doing all the work, sitting to all hours of the morning to write this, then no way am I paying someone else for my work.So my agent Bill Jeffrey told me to put it on Authonomy and literally, put it to the public vote so here we are, just over 3 months and I'm on the verge of the 100's.

You wrote your first novel when you were just 16, what inspired that? What was the novel about? Any snippets from it you’d want to share?

C. S. Lewis...

Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.


According to an article on CultureNI BooksNI.COM is finally  being launched this evening. Back in March I'd blogged @ YeWhat.Biz
I'd been asked to speak at a networking event for book publishers in Northern Ireland,which I didn't do. I'm that shy and retiring and feel comfortable hiding behind a big blog-wall. I'd also noticed more and more press releases and invites to numerous events in my inbox from book publishers. To add to this it seemed to me there was a gap that wasn't being filled, interesting information about books and authors from N.I. that could be shared. So I started http://www.BooksNI.Biz
At the time when I chose the domain name BooksNI.BIZ I noticed that the domain name BooksNI.COM directed me to  The Colourpoint Group's website I then set up BooksNI.BIZ  I've since discovered that the Colourpoint Group also own booksni.org, books-ni.org, books-ni.com and booksni.co.uk.

Where language and heritage, the craic and the ceol...

Specially designed Guildhall Press Culture poster supporting Derry as Candidate City for City of Culture 2013. 

A few books on the Bloody Sunday bookshelf.

As the news today here in Northern Ireland has been dominated by the release of the Bloody Sunday report I thought it'd be interesting to take a look at some of the books about Bloody Sunday. I'm sure after the events of today there'll be many more books published and peoples stories told.
Peter Pringle and Philip Jacobson investigated the shootings on Bloody Sunday  for The Sunday Times within hours of them happening and wrote the book Those Are Real Bullets: Bloody Sunday, Derry, 1972

Writer ___ Page/Screen/Stage

The latest author added to the Authors page here at BooksNI is Jamie Guiney. He joins the authors listed, like Paul Charles, Maggie O’Farrell and Colin Bateman who like all successful Northern Irish authors have a web presence. Jamie's site is a pleasure to visit, laid out well, easy to read and with that all important link to his twitter feed. If you've got a few minutes;visit, subscribe and follow Jamie.

Today is...

read the book here
National Bookstart Day and this year it's off to the seaside.A large number of libraries across Northern Ireland will be holding events to mark this occasion,celebrating the fun of sharing books. Libraries will be holding seaside rhyme themed adventures as well as song and story telling sessions. Children attending events that celebrate National Bookstart Day receive a free booklet of a seaside poem by the author Tony Mitton, beautifully illustrated by Alex Ayliffe and free seaside stickers, along with a Bookstart rhymetime leaflet.
Kim Aiken, Learning Development Manager with Libraries NI, explains:
“Libraries NI is keen to support the work of Bookstart in ensuring that all babies in Northern Ireland will get the best start in life, by being introduced to books from a very young age. By celebrating National Bookstart Day in Northern Ireland libraries, we are giving parents the opportunity to come along to these events, especially tailored for babies and pre-school children, to ensure that this love of books and reading will continue throughout childhood and beyond.”
Liz Canning, Booktrust National Development Manager is delighted that this year’s National Bookstart Day will be celebrated in June.
“The seaside theme is in keeping with the new summer date and we hope that the Seaside stories, activities and resources will encourage families to enjoy sharing books and rhymes together right through the summer, indoors and out.  A love of books is one of the most important gifts that can be given to a child and it is never too early to start.”

To find our more about events planned for pre-school children for today, contact your local library or check out the Libraries NI events website at www.librariesni.org.uk
Check out the Bookstart website for more details on Enjoy National Bookstart Day 2010 and on the Bookstart scheme at www.bookstart.org.uk

Help, BooksNI is already getting footie fever.

As Neil Lennon, the new manager of Celtic, calls for his players to go to war every time they go on the pitch I reckon it is a good time to mention a biography of an ex Celtic manager that's just been published. A biography of a man not as violent as the new manager of Celtic a man I'm sure most of the people of Kilrea are proud of.
The man is Martin O'Neill, truly  one of British football's true greats. Plucked from the Northern  Irish club Distillery by Nottingham Forest in 1971, the young Northern Irishman went on an incredible football journey that saw him clash against some of the game's biggest characters.

Blogging about...

It has been said before, that every story has already been told. Maybe so. But if you've got the gift of the gab, you can tell the same tale as often as you like and still give it a life of its own every time. Requiems for the Departed flaunts that gift seventeen times over with top shelf stories from Stuart Neville, Brian McGilloway, Adrian McKinty, Sam Millar and many more.
Adventures in Novel Writing 

17 short stories written by some of the biggest names in Irish crime fiction, and Maxim Jakubowski. The stories are divided into three groups Ulster, Myth, and Fianna. I have only had time to read Queen of the Hill by Stuart Neville and if the standard of the other stories is only half as good this is a collection not to be missed. With Ken Bruen, Brian McGilloway, Adrian, McKinty, Arlene Hunt and others contributing prepare to be frightened.
Crime Scraps

"Finest teacher this school has."

When a teacher gets "5s" on RateMyTeachers.Com for easiness,helpfulness and clarity. When a teacher receives comments  on the same website "Finest teacher this school has." and "Quality teacher. Survived AS level English with his help! He knows his stuff. Listen, Read, Study, You will do well." When a teacher like that writes a book I reckon it'll be worth reading.
The teacher with these top ratings is Francis Hagan who grew up in Belfast and waseducated at the University of Ulster and Queen's University. He has taught Creative Writing for ten yearsand is currently teaching English at Hazelwood College. His first novel is entitled The Auditor.
The blurb for the book reads...

Some Weekend Reading...


Space was ablaze with orgasmic brilliance as the death throes of a billion voices choked in flame.
Orange, blue, red and green danced in a leering kaleidoscope opera as the planet's atmosphere began to evaporate. Time held its breath as the land shivered, cracked and began to dissolve under great waves of vivid green lightning as the air sizzled with energy.The planet was breaking up, black infernos blasting glacial chunks into space in halos of fire, whole continents shimmering into ash beneath the onslaught.

Derry the Irish chick lit capital?

Claire Allan's book Jumping in Puddles has been released in paperback this week.Back in September last year when the book was first released I documented her tweets...
...best selling chick lit author Claire Allan, from Derry, whose third book ‘Jumping in Puddles’ has just been released. On Claire’s twitter page we find out a little about her. A day she won’t forget was the 14th September when she tweeted…
9.37am Taking bets on whether or not the books shall arrive today… anyone care to
1.31pm IT’S HERE, IT’S HERE, IT’S HERE Oh pretty, pretty book. Perhaps the prettiest of all the books in the world. And my name is on it! In big letters. And the word Bestselling
1.39pm I love the smell of new books - esp those which have my name on them. Oh Happy Day!
9.43pm Well, that was emotional. Gave my book to my granny and made her cry.
9.51pm @Keris LOL! She cried because it’s dedicated to her - it was all a big surprise. *sobby sobby sob*
10.59pm Right. Am off to my bed. With a copy of my NEW BOOK. Did I mention I got it today?

As BooksNI.Biz is backing the Derry City Of Culture bid and as Claire is from Derry I thought I'd ask her a few questions...

Are your novels set in Derry and the surrounding area just because you're familiar with the city or do you believe it is because it adds to the story line?
A bit of both. As a proud Derry wan I'm very familiar with the city and very proud of it so it was nice to set something locally. I do believe it adds to the book - Derry is a brilliant city with a thriving cafe/ restaurant/ pub/ arts scene. It also has stunning tourist attractions and setting books so close to the border with Donegal also allows me to visit the glorious Donegal shoreline.

@ the Guildhall Press 30th Birthday Bash & Book Launch

Last Thursday I made it along to The City of Culture offices in L/Derry to join in Guildhall Press thirtieth birthday celebrations.I took my camera along...


The offices were packed that lunchtime...