The Divining Wand

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Support Women’s Fiction and We All Win

January 12, 2010 By: larramiefg Category: Contests, Movies, News

[Since The Divining Wand’s purpose is to help readers get to know authors beyond their pages, Carleen Brice is today’s guest blogger with exciting news to share. Please welcome Carleen.]

It was a dream come true when Lifetime Movie Network (LMN) optioned my debut novel, Orange Mint and Honey. A dream made even bigger when they actually made the movie! I understand that something like only 5% of books that get optioned ever become movies.

There’s only one tiny little hitch. They changed the title. The movie is called “Sins of the Mother” and it will air Sunday, February 7th. It stars Jill Scott (“No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency”) and Nicole Beharie (“American Violet”) in a story about how a recovering alcoholic and her daughter work through their difficult past.

I was lucky enough to visit the set during one of the biggest scenes in the movie. (I was even an extra!) They do a fantastic job!

To help call awareness to the book on which the movie is based, I’m holding a contest.

Get your book club members and friends together for a watch party. Send me a jpeg of your party (that I can post online) and you’ll have a chance to win a gift basket filled with:
Autographed women’s fiction titles from me and some of my writer friends (including Connie Briscoe, Donna Hill, Therese Fowler, Bettye Griffin, Lynne Griffin, Marisa de los Santos, and others!)
Jill Scott CD
I heart black author coffee mug
I heart book club buttons (for everyone in your book club)
Orange, mint & honey treats and other goodies

I am so honored and grateful that so many authors agreed to participate and help me out. Even if you choose not to enter this contest, please do check out the works of the contributing writers. There are some great books here!

“Sins of the Mother” airs against the Super Bowl. I know lots of women watch football, especially the Super Bowl. But I’m hoping that this year maybe you’ll skip the Super Bowl and tune in to LMN. The higher the ratings for this movie, the higher the chances are you’ll see more of the work from women writers you enjoy.
Note: Please make sure you have LMN, not just Lifetime. LMN is a separate channel from the Lifetime channel.

Please visit my website or the “Sins of the Mother” based on Orange Mint and Honey Facebook event page for more details. Or if you’re on Goodreads, you can go here.

*****

Book Giveaway: For a chance to win a copy of Melanie Benjamin’s Alice I Have Been, please leave a comment on this post by 7:00 p.m. EST Wednesday, January 13, 2010. The winner — chosen from a random drawing — will be announced here in Thursday’s post.

BAGG, Buzz, Moira, and a Movie

December 01, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Audiocasts, Books, Movies

This year the Books Are Great Gifts campaign returns with LitChat’s post, A Time to Give:

“Tying into our BOOKS ARE GREAT GIFTS campaign, we’re adopting a charity to support for the holidays. Reading Tree is a non-profit organization that collects books–new and used–for schools all over the world.”

Please read the entire post to learn how you can make a difference, not just by giving books, fgtwibbon but by adding this “twibbon” to your Twitter profile. It’s simple, festive and more than worthy; although, to be honest, this Fairy Godmother cannot imagine the holidays without the gifting of books!

~ Now how would you like another chance to win a copy of Wendy Nelson Tokunaga’s Love in Translation? As one of the authors featured on Author Buzz this week, Wendy will be giving away five signed copies of her novel. To enter send an email to wendy@wendytokunaga.com with READER BUZZ in the subject header.

~Therese Walsh (The Last Will of Moira Leahy) did a WSKG “Off the Page” interview last week, talking specifically about Moira as well as about writing in general. Listen to it here and enjoy.

~ And LIFETIME has announced the date of Sunday, February 7, 2010 for the premiere airing of “Sins of the Mother,” the movie based on Carleen Brice’s debut novel, Orange Mint and Honey. Be sure to mark your calendars!

In the True Spirit of Halloween

October 29, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Books, Debs, Movies, Profiles

What comes to mind when you think of Halloween? Costumes, candy, cats that are black? Well here’s another “C” word — creativity — that applies in a most wondrous way.

But first let’s return to the end of August when, on The Red Carpet of The Debutante Ball, The Divining Wand introduced you to Sarah Pekkanen whose novel, The Opposite of Me, debuts March 9, 2010. What wasn’t mentioned then, but will be now, is that Sarah honed her writing skills as a newspaper reporter who had to be creative to cover the most challenging assignments.

This Tuesday, October 27, 2009, the about-to-become author posted Halloween is the most magical time, for Deb Sarah — an insightful perspective of a writer’s mind and a mother’s heart. You may read the essay by clicking the link or scrolling down this page. For, with Sarah’s permission, here is why every October 31st is so much more than Trick-or-Treat:

“Halloween is the most magical time, for Deb Sarah

“Years ago, I was working as a feature writer for The Baltimore Sun newspaper when an editor told me to go find a Halloween story. I think my editor had a vague idea of me interviewing a father who was trying to convince his kids to not get a violent, bloody costume — or maybe a modern Mom who wanted her daughter to dress up like a brain surgeon instead of Cinderella.

“Armed with a pen and the trusty spiral notebook that fit so well into my back pocket, I hit a Halloween costume store and did what I loved: Wandered around and watched people. Within an hour, I had my story. But instead of the interview I expected, I stumbled across something very different.

“The woman who caught my attention was a mother of five, and her two oldest kids had suddenly decided dressing up wasn’t cool in junior high school. My article became a story about a woman who was mourning the loss of childhood. She talked longingly about how she’d helped transform her older boys into anything their imagination desired in years past – once, one of her kids had morphed into a box of popcorn, with real popcorn sewn onto his hat. But the decision to leave Halloween behind was theirs alone; that was part of growing up. So she hid her sadness from them.

“Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays, and not just because of the chocolate. Like the Mom I interviewed, I love the fact that Halloween celebrates imagination. And the reason why I’m incredulous, ecstatic, and beyond grateful that I now write fiction is because it means I never have to leave that piece of my childhood
behind.

“As a little girl, I spent hours daydreaming, happily inhabiting the colorful stories that played out in my head. Most of the time adults didn’t understand this; to them I probably appeared spacey and unfocused. But on Halloween – on that one magical day – adults joined in the celebration with me, understanding that I really was a fairy princess, or an Olympic gymnast, or a fat orange pumpkin with skinny little legs.

“This year I bought a giant, hot-pink, fuzzy hat to wear while my husband and I take our kids trick-or-treating. I’ll put away the hat for another year on November 1, but my imagination gets to stay. Because there are characters to create – people who do and say things that completely surprise me – and scenes to craft, and moods to conjure, and it all comes from the strange, shimmering place I remember so well from my childhood. The place we all get to visit, on Halloween.”

*****

Sarah posts every Tuesday at The Debutante Ball, the same day Deb Founder Tish Cohen appeared there, in 2006 – 2007, before the debut of Town House. Many know that the book was on its way to becoming a movie when things stalled. However yesterday there was this news from Variety and Entertainment Weekly.com. Congratulations Tish!

Announcement: The winners of CJ Lyon’s new medical suspense thriller, Urgent Care are: Jeannie from Philly, PA and Peg Brantley. Congratulations to you both! Please email: diviningwand (at) gmail (dot) com with a mailing address and your book will be sent out promptly.

Coming Attractions: A Movie and A Novel

October 14, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Advance News, Books, Movies

Two popular authors shared exciting news last week and, if you missed it, here’s your opportunity to get caught up:

~ As you may remember Carleen Brice’s (Children of the Waters) debut novel, Orange Mint & Honey was optioned by the Lifetime Movie Network. About a month ago it was cast with Jill Scott as Nona Dixon and Nicole Beharie portraying Shay with the movie title changed to “Sins of the Mother.” Last Friday Carleen visited Vancouver where the film is being shot, then yesterday — Tuesday, October 13, 2009 — posted Pictures from Vancouver on the The Pajama Gardener blog. No news yet of an airdate, but please stay tuned.

~ Last Thursday Allison Winn Scotch (The Department of Lost and Found, Time of My Life) posted a picture too — that of her next book cover for The One That I Want being released June 1, 2010. The cover:

OneThatIWantcover

Here’s a brief synopsis: What if you could see into the future? What if you didn’t like what was revealed? Would you still choose to see it?

And you can read more here.

Two Coming Attractions = A Lot to Look Forward to!

Book Giveaway continues with a chance for you to win a copy of The Last Will of Moira Leahy. To enter, leave a comment on this post describing what made your younger self feel powerful, brave, or invincible. The deadline for all entries is THIS evening at 7:00 p.m. EDT with the winner to be announced on tomorrow’s post.

Authors Beyond Their Pages and in the Media

August 13, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Audiocasts, Interviews, Movies, News

Our authors are definitely out and about, garnering attention in print, audio and film. Just in case you’ve haven’t heard, here’s some of their latest news.

Judy Merrill Larsen (All the Numbers) shared her baking talent in the August 5, 2009 St. Louis Post Dispatch article, Novelist is creative in the kitchen, too.

Taking to the airwaves, Carleen Brice (Orange Mint & Honey and Children of the Waters) recorded Carleen Brice Podcasts Children of the Waters from the legendary Tattered Cover bookstore.

And Allison Winn Scotch (Department of Lost and Found and Time of My Life is still giddy over the Variety article that proclaims: Eastman Makes Time for “Life”. How exciting!

Indeed these are three more ways to get to discover and enjoy authors well beyond their pages…

Please note that the giveaway for a copy of TETHERED by Amy MacKinnon will remain open until Sunday evening at 7:00 pm EDT. Leave a comment in the post directly below to be entered in the random drawing! The winner will be announced in Monday’s post.

Beyond Audrey Niffenegger’s Pages

July 22, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Books, Interviews, Movies

For those who read Suzanne Anderson’s A View From Table One, The Divining Wand — A New Spell Is Cast, you may be thinking, “Ah, Larramie was granted her own wish.” Because in that interview I was asked:

“Are there any favorite/dream authors you’d like to feature or review at DW?”

And I replied:

“My second all-time favorite novel is The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger, in fact I read the book at its release and reread it again four months later. The movie adaptation debuts in a few weeks, on August 14th, and her new novel, Her Fearful Symmetry, will be available September 29, 2009. But Ms. Niffenger — in addition to being a writer — is also an artist and professor in the Interdisciplinary Book Arts MFA Program at the Columbia College Chicago Center for Book and Paper Arts. And, from one TV interview I watched on her, she appeared rather shy.

“However back on March 10, 2006 at the blog, Writer Unboxed, there was the terrific post: INTERVIEW: Audrey Niffenegger by Therese Walsh (debut author of The Last Will of Moria Leahy to be published October 13, 2009).

[Note: That was then, this is now.]

“Audrey Niffenger will be busy and certainly the object of attention in the coming months…I don’t think The Divining Wand would fit into her schedule.” 😉

Now, while that still holds true, I’ve taken some liberties and allowed Borders to assist in discovering this author well beyond her books’ pages.

First of all there’s a fascinating essay, The Story from the Static: On Writing and Painting which describes Ms. Niffenegger’s creative process.

Then you can watch a Video of Audrey Niffenegger being interviewed on her forthcoming book, Her Fearful Symmetry.

Finally may you enjoy the Film Preview of The Time Traveler’s Wife in theaters August 14.

Again thank you Borders for waving your divining wand!