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Mussel Bound

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Hi, everyone, and welcome fellow newbies!  I learned about you from many references in the SCBWI site, (aka lobster over there, hi everyone) and now am finally a member of those mysterious "blue boards."  :yup

Not yet published, have a PB I'm getting ready to self-publish, and a few more in the works based on the same characters, best known as the Lobster Dude gang.  Mussel Bound is my favorite as you see, and the star of the upcoming PB, How to Laugh Like a Nerd.

I learned a lot just lurking, (actually thought I'd registered a couple of months ago, only to not exist when I tried to post here.)

There's some interesting, fun people just on all of these pages, looking forward to getting to know everyone.

 :band (I'm not a musician, just love music and couldn't wait to use that icon) eta - oh, wow, it's a whold group of 'em!
#1261 - June 16, 2007, 05:41 PM

Welcome, Mussel -- and welcome to the rest of the newbies, too! ;D

#1262 - June 16, 2007, 06:27 PM
"This is your life and you be what you want to be.
Just don't hurt nobody, 'less of course they ask you."

XTC, "Garden of Earthly Delights" (1989)

Elysabeth

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Hi, everyone, and welcome fellow newbies!  I learned about you from many references in the SCBWI site, (aka lobster over there, hi everyone) and now am finally a member of those mysterious "blue boards."  :yup

Not yet published, have a PB I'm getting ready to self-publish, and a few more in the works based on the same characters, best known as the Lobster Dude gang.  Mussel Bound is my favorite as you see, and the star of the upcoming PB, How to Laugh Like a Nerd.

I learned a lot just lurking, (actually thought I'd registered a couple of months ago, only to not exist when I tried to post here.)

There's some interesting, fun people just on all of these pages, looking forward to getting to know everyone.

 :band (I'm not a musician, just love music and couldn't wait to use that icon) eta - oh, wow, it's a whold group of 'em!


Welcome Mussel,

Interesting choice of names - and yes those musician icons are pretty cool.   I self-published my first short story collection on www.lulu.com (free except for the purchase of an isbn and other services they offer but most aren't necessary) - and now have published with Echelon Press two short stories - Karen runs a monthly themed contest and I know she is taking submissions for everything in general for ebook publication but is specifically looking for YA for print and ebook formats - she is trying to up the YA/children's line.  You may want to check out some of the small press publishers too - E :)
#1263 - June 16, 2007, 06:34 PM

Mussel Bound

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Thanks, G.R. !

Thanks, also, Elysabeth!  I read your impressive bio on the way down the page, but everyone's stories, screen names, signature quotes and avatars are so lively and fun, that I forgot to mention it.

Mussel Bound is pictured to the left, by the way, if you hadn't guessed. A few of his friends are Clammy Hans, Crab Leggs and Callie Mari... 

I've heard good things about lulu.com - by free, I assume you mean ebooks, right? Although their print prices seemed more than reasonable, and I've heard good things about them.  Do you know offhand if they do hardcovers?  I know it's more expensive, but I'm really hoping to be able to do it that way.

By the way, I once considered moving to North Carolina, stayed with a friend for a week while discussing a job there.  Very nice people, but I'm not too fond of hot weather, white gravy or country music.    :laugh:  (edited to change smiley - the first one looked rather sickly and insincere in the context)
#1264 - June 16, 2007, 08:21 PM
« Last Edit: June 16, 2007, 08:30 PM by Mussel Bound »

Elysabeth

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Mussel Bound is pictured to the left, by the way, if you hadn't guessed. A few of his friends are Clammy Hans, Crab Leggs and Callie Mari... 

I've heard good things about lulu.com - by free, I assume you mean ebooks, right? Although their print prices seemed more than reasonable, and I've heard good things about them.  Do you know offhand if they do hardcovers?  I know it's more expensive, but I'm really hoping to be able to do it that way.

By the way, I once considered moving to North Carolina, stayed with a friend for a week while discussing a job there.  Very nice people, but I'm not too fond of hot weather, white gravy or country music.  :)


Love the names - Is this an already published work?  Have I missed something?

As far as lulu.com - I'm not sure if they do hardbacks but you set your own royalty (up to 80% of the cost of publishing) - you set the type of publishing you want, either ebook, print book, or both; you only have to download your information (saved files) when setting up your works - it was very easy to work with - all I had to do was download my word document, pick a cover (I used one of theirs) and then set my royalties, set up my front page (your store front) and then submit it.  The feature I like most about them is that when I go to my storefront or my home page, I click on the title of the book and I can see instant stats - how many hits I've had and comments, et cetera - I then can go to my account info to see how many books have sold during the period (the last week, the last month and overall sales) - they pay royalties quarterly and you have to have earned at least $20 in royalties before they send you an actual check - but you have the advantage of knowing exactly how many copies are needed to make up that difference and all -

When I first published with them, I didn't have the option of being listed with amazon.com, et cetera but now it is an automatic thing - you are listed with several places for a year automatically (that's with the purchase of an isbn - because without it - you don't even get listed in the books in print collection)

I'm in South Carolina and having been a military brat - I don't like country music, the weather isn't so bad here (kind of at the foothills of the mountains and in the mountains of North Carolina always seemed pretty comfortable to me but of late seems that's not even true anymore), and I prefer white gravy to brown gravy - but that's just me (I'm really more southern than I care to admit - lol) - E :)
#1265 - June 16, 2007, 08:36 PM

Amanda F.

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Hi! 

My name's Amanda, and I have been lurking on the boards for a bit and thought I would introduce myself.  I am currently working on writing pb's, and am settling into the dummy book/sample illustration side of trying to submit work as an author/illustrator. I'm very happy to have found this wonderful message board, and look forward to keeping up with everyone.

Thanks!
#1266 - June 17, 2007, 02:58 PM

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Oops.  Been here a few weeks and just found this thread too.  Hi, everyone--I'm so glad I finally joined here.  Some amazing discussions and a lot of  :balloongroup:interesting people.

I write both YA and adult fiction...but the YA is definitely more fun!
#1267 - June 17, 2007, 07:17 PM
The Leland Sisters series: Courtship and Curses, Bewitching Season, Betraying Season (Holt BYR/Macmillan)
www.marissadoyle.com
www.nineteenteen.com

Welcome, Amanda and Marissa! I hope you both have a lot fun here. :)

#1268 - June 17, 2007, 08:07 PM
"This is your life and you be what you want to be.
Just don't hurt nobody, 'less of course they ask you."

XTC, "Garden of Earthly Delights" (1989)

PDM

Guest
I’ve been reading this forum for quite a while and have learned a great deal. I thought it was about time I should join in on the fun.

I’ve been writing and cartooning for a long time, and produce a comic strip called Wombania www.wombania.com that appears weekly in a number of newspapers. Wombania is about a group of wayward Wombies (genetically-engineered wombats) who try adapt to, and make sense of, the human world in which they now live.

I’ve written two PB stories featuring the Wombie characters, and have completed a dummy for one of the stories.
#1269 - June 18, 2007, 06:53 PM
« Last Edit: June 18, 2007, 06:55 PM by PDM »

Mussel Bound

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Welcome, everyone! I see I'm not the only one who lurks for awhile before opening up and posting.   :x

Elysabeth, no, not published yet - I have the characters copyrighted as well as the story, and plan to self-pub.  Glad to hear your experience with Lulu is good; I do hear good things about them.  However, I don't think they do hardbacks, and if I can afford it, I want a hardback (it's a PB, will be a series of PBs) with the square backing so it's visible on shelves.
#1270 - June 18, 2007, 07:03 PM

Elysabeth

Guest
Welcome, everyone! I see I'm not the only one who lurks for awhile before opening up and posting.   :x

Elysabeth, no, not published yet - I have the characters copyrighted as well as the story, and plan to self-pub.  Glad to hear your experience with Lulu is good; I do hear good things about them.  However, I don't think they do hardbacks, and if I can afford it, I want a hardback (it's a PB, will be a series of PBs) with the square backing so it's visible on shelves.

Gotcha.  I'll keep my ears opened for such publishers that won't cost you an arm and a leg.  Perhaps a small/middle press publisher who does specialize in children's books/picture books?  - I will keep you posted on what I find - not sure how to contact you offlist since I'm still new and there is porbably something listed in one of the publishing forums on this topic - and I'm sure there are many here that know more about the ins and outs of picture book publishing - - will keep searching for help (either on the forums or elsewhere) - because I hate to see someone spend the money to self publish when they could be making tons of money on the stories - I think the characters themselves will work wonders - E :)
#1271 - June 18, 2007, 08:43 PM

KirstyAnn

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PDM - As an wombat loving Aussie I was a little perturbed to hear of these genetically engineered wombats  .... however, I have to say the cartoons are fantastic!! I totally agree that the "secret to enjoying life is to never read the ingredients"   :dr

Welcome!!
#1272 - June 19, 2007, 03:30 AM

PDM

Guest
Thanks, KirstyAnn! I'm glad you enjoyed the cartoons. I hope my Wombies don't upset any Assuies, or wombats for that matter. Wombats are such unique critters, and seem to be a well-kept secret.

Mussel Bound, I like your website and characters. I liked the animated claw links. If you don't mind my asking, are you running a premium shop at Cafepress? I've been considering that, but don't know if it's worth it or not.
#1273 - June 19, 2007, 06:45 PM

Mussel Bound

Guest
Hi, PDM,  thanks! and welcome to the blue boards.

I have the premium shop, and I'm sure it will be worth it eventually.  To be honest, I've only sold a few things to friends so far, but I didn't expect to do squat until the book comes out and I start the heavy marketing.  Just wanted to have it ready and in place when I'm ready, and to have built up a bit of following for the characters with the web site and get them and the merchandise in people's heads.
Other people I know who are actively selling on Cafe Press say they do very well.

Oh, and if you're going to do something, do it all out the best you can - the freebie shops, you can only have one design, and it's unlimited on the premium shop. Yes, you could have 10 free shops and CP is actually totally ok with that, but to me, all 10 are competing against one another rather than combining to benefit from each others' traffic.

PS - Your avatar is adorable!
#1274 - June 19, 2007, 07:12 PM

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Hi, PDM. Another wombat-loving Aussie here. I like your wombies; with their teeth, they remind me a bit of the Ferals, and I know kids love them. I note that you have the best wombat book ever reviewed on your site - Jackie French's Diary of a Wombat. Anyone who hasn't read this one, I strongly recommend you rush out and do so right away. PDM's review is spot on, for anyone who wants more detail. It's just beautiful book which adults love as much as kids; the character of the wombat is so appealing and comes through with such affection in the very spare text. It's no surprise to learn that Jackie did actually live with a wombat for a while and that's where the story came from.

Meg
#1275 - June 19, 2007, 07:26 PM

PDM

Guest
Thanks, Meg. I'm glad to hear you like my Wombies, but I have to say, despite my wombat predilection, I am not a fellow Aussie. I'm actually from Canada.

I had never heard of the Ferals before, so I looked them up. Interesting looking puppets. Sort of like an Aussie Muppet show perhaps?

I'm a bit biased, but yes, Diary of a Wombat is a fantastic book! Probably my favourite Children's book. I wish I could write so simply and so effectively. And the artwork is just perfect for the story.

Mussel Bound, thanks for the advice about the Cafe Press shop. I presently have a basic shop which certainly could be improved. The marketing is where I have trouble. I hope when you do your "heavy marketing" of your upcoming book you might share some of your tips in the marketing section of this board. I know I could certainly learn a thing or two in that department. I guess I really need to put some effort into selling.

Glad you like my avatar. He's Binky.
#1276 - June 20, 2007, 06:34 PM

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Thanks, Meg. I'm glad to hear you like my Wombies, but I have to say, despite my wombat predilection, I am not a fellow Aussie. I'm actually from Canada.

What I meant was 'another wombat-loving Aussie like KirstyAnn, who posted just before me. But we're happy to share our wombats with anyone. Just treat them right!
#1277 - June 21, 2007, 05:50 AM

PDM

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I promise to treat all the world's wombats right!
#1278 - June 21, 2007, 05:22 PM

KirstyAnn

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I'd wondered where you were from PDM so I'm glad you clarified I spent a year in Canada in 2003/2004 and loved it!  :moose I actually dragged a Canadian boy home with me  :love

He has a mild wombat obsession too - he was over the moon when he got to play with some at Steve Irwin's Zoo here.
#1279 - June 22, 2007, 06:22 PM

Hello. I'm Michelle from Michigan. I write MG fantasy. I have one book that is being submitted to editors by an agent. My second book is in the revising stage. I spend my days with four small children  :! :jump :jump (this is a fair representation of my kids), and my evenings writing and teaching classes at the local community college.
#1280 - June 22, 2007, 06:36 PM

Liz
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Hi, I am new to this board and have been attempting to write for a few years.  I have a couple of adult novels in almost complete stages, but I just cannot seem to go any further with them.   :banghead:

So I moved on... I have to MA children's books going.   :reading2:  Cannot seem to keep my mind focused on only one project at a time.  ;D

One is a book on "girl bullying" and the other hopefully will be the first of a series of mysteries.

I am published, but the work I did was pretty esoteric.  A lot of it is in the public domain. I was a Histoirc Preservation Specialist which really means I was an Architectural historian.  So I wrote a lot of things for the State of Tennessee, although I no longer live there and the National Park Service. I do have a piece in the Encylopedia of Tennesse History, a great book for keeping doors open or for flattening items ::)

Now all I have to do is keep  :typing:

Liz

ps - please excuse my spelling mistakes, I never did learn how to spell.
#1281 - June 22, 2007, 06:41 PM
You must do the things you think you cannot do.  Eleanor Roosevelt

http://www.lizstrawwrites.com/

PDM

Guest
Michelle, I loved the representation of your kids!

Lizstraw, the "Architectural historian" stuff sounds like it would have been a pretty interesting job.

KirstyAnn, I'm glad you liked Canada. Hope the seasons and the temperature difference weren't too much of a shock. But Ive got to say, if you were taking home strays, you could have taken me! I'd certainly like to play with the zoo wombats, too.
#1282 - June 22, 2007, 07:10 PM

Elysabeth

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Hi, I am new to this board and have been attempting to write for a few years.  I have a couple of adult novels in almost complete stages, but I just cannot seem to go any further with them.   :banghead:

So I moved on... I have to MA children's books going.   :reading2:  Cannot seem to keep my mind focused on only one project at a time.  ;D

One is a book on "girl bullying" and the other hopefully will be the first of a series of mysteries.

I am published, but the work I did was pretty esoteric.  A lot of it is in the public domain. I was a Histoirc Preservation Specialist which really means I was an Architectural historian.  So I wrote a lot of things for the State of Tennessee, although I no longer live there and the National Park Service. I do have a piece in the Encylopedia of Tennesse History, a great book for keeping doors open or for flattening items ::)

Now all I have to do is keep  :typing:

Liz

ps - please excuse my spelling mistakes, I never did learn how to spell.

Hey Liz,

Welcome to the boards - we know each other off the Mystery Most Cozy forum on yahoo - what a small world - welcome aboard and from what I've seen so far - this group has some great advice and lot of helpful information - E :)
#1283 - June 23, 2007, 06:52 AM

sjb2

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Hey everyone - my name is Stephen J. Brooks.  I am a full time children's book writer living in Kansas City, MO.  I am a retired Federal Agent who left service after 9/11 to write and raise my children full time.  Unfortunately, after 9/11 I was constantly out of the country and I was unable to tuck my little girl in at a night so I wrote a poem to comfort her at night - this poem was picked up and published by a small publishing comp. in Nebraska.  I haven't looked back sense and now write full time for Purple Sky Publishing.  I love what I do and I love interacting with the children and sharing my exepriences.  My only advice - don't ever give up on a dream - you can achieve anything you set your mind to! 

Stephen J. Brooks :hug1:
#1284 - June 23, 2007, 10:26 AM

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Welcome, Stephen.  It's good to have you here.
#1285 - June 23, 2007, 11:44 AM

Liz
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 :books:
The architectural historian was an interesting job.  I traveled through every county in Tennessee but one, more than once.  I even got to walk through Graceland in my stocking feet on the white carpet in the living room all the way to the music room.  :sing:  LOL  No upstairs tour though. darn.

I saw places in Tennessee most Tennesseans never knew existed.  Been on roads I am not sure that really qualified as roads. Have seen buildings of all sorts from those of the very wealthy to shotgun houses.  I somehow prefered the lower end of the scale, I decided if you had money you could get just about anything or anyone to build your house (even Frank Lloyd Wright).  I became the office champion for the poor and African-American communities.  Even worked on the nomination for the church where Tina Turner sang as a child.  Yes, there really is a Nutbush, TN. 
However the job and I decided to part ways. :x

My bachelor's degree is in elementary education and I have some experience teaching third grade as well as substituting K-4th and occasionally 5th and 6th grades.   :yup

I have a lot of other strange jobs under my belt, but I think I will leave them a secret right now. :moose

Good to see you here Elysabeth (did I spell that right, I am too used to Elizabeth!)

Liz
#1286 - June 23, 2007, 03:35 PM
You must do the things you think you cannot do.  Eleanor Roosevelt

http://www.lizstrawwrites.com/

Elysabeth

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:books:

Good to see you here Elysabeth (did I spell that right, I am too used to Elizabeth!)

Liz

Yes ma'am did it perfectly.  Thank you - lol - I look forward to seeing and hearing about your writing - E :)
#1287 - June 23, 2007, 09:06 PM

thirtycats

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Hi!

I'm Dina.   I just found this place thanks to a "Friend" on livejournal.

I'm trying to find an agent for my YA novel that I love but fear no one else will love!

I just rewrote my query letter becaue my first one brought me ten rejections.   Ouch.

Anyway, I've been exploring these boards and you guys seem very friendly, fun, and helpful.   Oh and I also like reading the pain of other people's rejections.  It's nice seeing how I am not alone in my misery.

#1288 - June 27, 2007, 09:28 AM

Mussel Bound

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Welcome, Dina - what do your thirty cats think of your story? Cats are known for being picky; if you can win most of them over, you'll be fine :laugh:
#1289 - June 27, 2007, 09:39 AM

thirtycats

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28 of my cats hate the story.

But two really love it.   And I mention those cats to every agent I query.

I say "My book is very good.  Cause my Grandpa and my two cats say it is."

I don't mention the other 28 cats.   
#1290 - June 27, 2007, 09:56 AM

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